Punjab:  With rising cyber crime cases across the country, 18 states have got state-of-the-art cyber forensic-cum-training laboratories. These laboratories, set up with the help of the Ministry of Home Affairs, have helped the law enforcement agencies in cracking thousands of cyber crime cases, including child pornography.

According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), the cybercrime cases registered in 2017, 2018 and 2019 were 21, 796, 27, 248 and 44, 546 respectively. This includes 46 cases of cyber terrorism, registered under Section 66F of the Information Technology Act, 2000, during the same period.

In 2019, the Union Home Ministry provided a grant of Rs 93.12 crore to all the states and union territories under the Cyber Crime Prevention against Women and Children (CCPWC) scheme, to set up these cyber forensic-cum-training laboratories, hiring of junior cyber consultants and training and capacity building to the law enforcement personnel.

These labs commissioned in Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh and Arunachal Pradesh are fully functional. However, these state cyber labs in Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Maharashtra, Punjab, Rajasthan, Mizoram, Manipur, Tripura and Delhi are in the final stage and will start working soon.

Apart from the capacity building to provide hands-on training to law enforcement personnel, the Centre has also established the state-of-the-art National Cyber Forensic Laboratory (NCFL). It is part of the “Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C), at Cyber Prevention Awareness Detection (CyPAD) in Delhi. It provides early stage cyber forensic assistance to Investigating Officers of the states and union territories police.

The ministry has set up the ‘Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C)’ to deal with all types of cyber crimes in the country, in a coordinated and comprehensive manner wherein the states’ investigation agencies can seek necessary help in tracking cyber criminals.

Talking about the training curriculum, the officer said that it has been prepared for law enforcement agencies personnel, prosecutors and judicial officers for better handling of investigation and prosecution. Further, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) platform, namely ‘CyTrain’ portal has been developed under I4C for capacity building of police officers and judicial officers through online course on critical aspects of cyber crime investigation, forensics, and prosecution along with certification, the official said, adding that more than 6000 police officers from states and union territories are registered and more than 1500 certificates have been issued through the portal.

Earlier, the ministry had come up with the National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal to enable the public to report incidents pertaining to all types of cyber crimes including financial fraud, with a special focus on cyber crimes against women and children. A toll-free number 155260 has been operationalized to get assistance in lodging online cyber complaints.

A Citizen Financial Cyber Fraud Reporting and Management System module has also been launched for immediate reporting of financial frauds and to stop siphoning off of funds by the fraudsters. Using these facilities, more than 28, 000 police and law enforcement agencies personnel and about 1, 000 judicial officers have been trained.

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