New Delhi: Incidents of cyber crimes have registered a sharp increase across the country, as per latest data available with the Union Home Ministry.
While a total of 471 cases were registered under the Information Technology Act and IPC sections during 2003, the number fell to 347 in 2004, but shot up to 481 in 2005, said sources in the Ministry of Home Affairs.
They said Gujarat accounted for the highest number of 155 incidents in 2005, followed by Andhra Pradesh at 82 and Punjab at 50.
Delhi accounted for 18 incidents in 2005, up from 14 in 2004 and only four in the previous year.
At least three states showed a significant jump in the cases cyber crimes. Gujarat recorded 155 incidents in 2005 against 126 in 2004, Karnataka 38 cases in 2005 compared to 14 in 2004 and Punjab 50 cases in 2005 against only six in the previous year.
However, at least two states saw a notable decline in cyber crime. While it came down in Andhra Pradesh from 101 in 2004 to 82 in 2005, in Tamil Nadu it fell from 50 in 2004 to 22 in 2005, the figures revealed.
Sources said the cases, registered under the Information Technology Act, 2000, and various sections of the Indian Penal Code, have been compiled by the National Crime Records Bureau.
Though cyber crime has been reported from a number of states and union territories, major arrests have been made in only four states.
Gujarat, which recorded the maximum number of cyber crimes, also accounted for the largest number of 159 arrests in 2005, followed by 110 in Andhra Pradesh and 51 each in Chhattisgarh and Orissa during the same year.
Offences under IT Act relate to tampering computer source documents, hacking, obscene publication or transmission in electronic form and non-compliance of orders of certifying authority.
Failure to assist Government agencies in decrypting or intercepting information, unauthorised access or attempts to access protected computer system, publishing false digital signature certificate and breach of confidentiality and privacy too are treated as offences under IT Act.
Offences under IPC relate to forgery, criminal breach of trust, fraud, counterfeiting and tampering.
The amended IT Act provides for dealing with new forms of crimes like publishing of material containing sexually explicit act in electronic form, video voyeurism, breach of confidentiality and leakage of data by service providers, e-commerce fraud through impersonation, commonly known as ‘phishing’, identity theft and offensive message through communication service.