In 1997, John Carlin published an essay for Wired Magazine titled “A Farewell to Arms.” You can see the story here. John Carlin’s piece depicts an entirely different situation from the one that is depicted in Ernest Hemingway’s book of the same name, which is about a soldier who is physically saying goodbye to the battlefield. John Carlin presented a novel concept in the essay that he wrote about Cyber Crime.
The point he was trying to make was that conventional weaponry won’t be necessary for future conflicts. Instead, we shall use a different strategy to combat them. The manner in which he anticipated things to be almost twenty years ago is now the way things really are.
Today, phrases such as “cyber crimes,” “net crimes,” “computer-fraud,” “cyber extortion,” etc. are often used in everyday conversation. A new category of criminal activity has emerged as a direct result of the development and proliferation of the internet. The term most often used to refer to it is “cyber crimes.” The phrase “computer network” or “virtual reality” often comes to mind when one hears the word “cyber.”
To summarize, the term “cyber crime” refers to any illegal activity that takes place in cyberspace, on a computer network, or inside a secure computer system. Because our current era is wholly reliant on network-based facilities, even a little disruption on the part of the network may result in a significant number of issues. A single piece of information that is entered incorrectly or a single keystroke that is taken in the wrong direction might actually create a significant deal of devastation and ruin.
Despite the fact that modern technologies have made it possible for us to do a great many things, they have also placed us in a situation where we are susceptible to danger. We are often powerless in the face of our own creation since we are the ones who brought these things into existence. It’s possible that some individuals make errors in good faith, while others are taking advantage of these vulnerabilities on purpose.
Cybercrime is the term that describes what they are doing. After becoming active in cyberspace, they resort to deception and other nefarious practices in order to make their nefarious objectives a reality, despite the fact that this may be very destructive to both people and groups of persons. These kinds of cybercrimes are very risky, and they always constitute a significant menace to individuals’, communities’, and nations’ right to privacy on every level.
What precisely is meant by the term “cyber crime”?
Drs. Debarati Haldar and K. Jaishankar gave the following definitions of what constitutes cybercrime:
“Offenses that are committed against an individual or group of individuals with a criminal motive to intentionally harm the reputation of the victim or cause physical or mental harm or loss to the victim directly or indirectly using modern telecommunication networks such as the internet (chat rooms, emails, notice boards or groups).
mobile phone (SMS/MMS).” “Offenses that are committed against an individual or group of individuals with a criminal motive to intentionally harm the reputation of the victim or cause physical or mental harm or loss to the victim directly or
Hackers are the most popular name given to those who commit crimes online. The word “hacker” is now so overused that it is being used to everyone who hacks into computer systems. This is because the phrase has become so overused. Nevertheless, this is not totally accurate. Although the word “cracker” has never gained popularity among the general public, there is a distinction that can be made between hackers and crackers.
Hackers are those who acquire illegal access to computer networks or other types of information and communication systems, often for the sole purpose of testing their skills. They see it as a challenge, which they gladly embrace for the sake of their enjoyment.
Some of the hackers even think and vehemently assert that they are performing a service by disclosing holes and security faults of different computer networks. This is something that they do in order to justify their actions. These cybercriminals are not interested in acquiring anything and have no desire to advance their financial situation in any way.
Crackers, on the other hand, are those who hack into computer systems illegally for the purpose of making financial gains, shutting down hardware, pirating software, or altering or destroying data. They often try to destroy the victim’s property and possessions in some way. The hackers described before are referred to in common parlance as “white-hat hackers” because they do not engage in hostile activity, but the hackers described subsequently are known as “black-hat hackers” because they do engage in destructive activity.
Various forms of online criminality of Cyber Crime
There is a wide variety of illegal activity committed online. The following are some of the others that are briefly mentioned:
Breaking and entering
It is a crime to break into a computer system that belongs to another person or group, whether they are private or public. The victim is placed in a highly precarious situation as a result of hacking since there is a possibility that all of the secret information in a computer system might be revealed. It is a crime that has a penalty, and the rules that govern hacking are quite stringent.
Internet slander or libel
It is just as easy to use the internet to distribute false information as it is to convey accurate information. Especially in forums and chat rooms, where users may submit comments without having them checked by moderators, websites have the potential to offer material that is inaccurate or even libelous. It is very necessary to bring attention to the elevated risk that is posed by misleading or inaccurate information. Because online utterances may be seen by people all over the globe, defamation can do victims significant harm to their reputation as well as their sense of dignity to a significant degree.
Extortion via the Internet of Cyber Crime
Cyber-extortionists develop malicious software and often threaten people or businesses in order to extract money. They are able to inflict significant harm on the persons or organizations that are under attack by using these softwares. They provide “protection” in return for money, but if the money is not paid they will either disclose or destroy all of the financial and security information. It is possible to think of these cyber-extortionists as the cyber-mafias of the modern day.
Sending a high number of e-mails to a victim, with the intention of causing their email account to collapse (in the case of an individual victim), is what is meant by the term “e-mail bombing.” These kinds of actions are done with the intention of harassing another person.
Terrorism committed online of Cyber Crime
Barry C. Collin is the one who first used the phrase “cyber-terrorism” back in the 1980s. It is described as the deliberate assault on information, computer systems, computer programs, and data that is carried out by clandestine agents or subnational organizations with the intention of causing physical harm to non-combatant targets.
Cyber-terrorists have the potential to do unfathomable damage to a nation or a group of people. They are able to break into a telephone network when there is an emergency and cause it to shut down, which results in more people being killed. Imagine that a scenario that is quite similar to the one that occurred on September 11th has emerged and that emergency personnel are being dispatched.
In the meanwhile, terrorists are able to get into the emergency communication system, where they may reroute all instructions, supply fake information, and so on.
As a result, the situation will become much more dire. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) of the United States of America has its own Cyber Security Unit (CSU), which is responsible for defending the country from cyberattacks. Cyber-terrorists aim their attacks targeting several sectors, including transportation, communications, and financial data. Therefore, it is possible to emerge victorious from a conflict without firing a single shot.
Cyber Crime committed online in Bangladesh
A technological revolution has taken place in Bangladesh, despite the country’s status as a third world nation. A adolescent in Bangladesh is able to get their hands on laptops and other electronic gadgets with relative ease. Because of this, they have sufficient opportunities to participate in hacking. In Bangladesh, hacking has already developed into a significant concern.
The pleasure of hacking is attracting an increasing number of young individuals who are interested in doing it for themselves. Hacking and the disclosure of private information is not limited to young people; even the mainstream media is often complicit in these activities.
The case of Mahmudur Rahman is considered to be one of the most significant instances in Bangladesh in terms of cyber crimes, and it is possible to refer to it as the very first cyber crime case in Bangladesh. In December of 2012, Mahmudur Rahman, the proprietor of a Bangladeshi daily called Amar Desh, was taken to court for publishing information on a Skype discussion that had taken place between the previous chairman of the International Crimes Tribunal, Justice Md Nijamul Huq, and an expatriate legal expert.
This action was taken in accordance with an order from the High Court. On December 13, 2012, he and Hashmat Ali, the publisher of Amar Desh, were named as defendants in a lawsuit.
On February 15, 2012, a group of individuals claiming to be Bangladeshi hackers and going by the moniker ‘Black Hat Hackers’ compromised more than 25000 websites belonging to the Indian government and other organizations. These compromised websites included key websites such as the website of the Border Security Forces (BSF).
Activities that are regarded to be propagandistic in nature might likewise be considered to constitute cybercrimes. Information that is purposefully constructed to be one-sided and deceptive in order to advance or draw attention to a certain political philosophy or cause is known as propaganda. The general populace becomes unsettled and panicked as a result. For instance, we might discuss the Ramu Violence that occurred in Cox’s Bazar in 2012.
Someone using a phony Facebook account desecrated the Holy Quran by posting a picture of it on the wall of the account. Under the guise of a Buddhist guy, the bogus account was created. This message incited hostility among the average Muslims living in that region, and as a result, those individuals assaulted Buddhists living in that region without first confirming the legitimacy of the Facebook account in question.
A significant number of Buddhist families, monasteries, and temples were destroyed. Therefore, it is abundantly obvious that Bangladesh is not immune to the danger posed by cybercrimes. Every day, new types of cybercrime are being committed, and the current state of law and order will deteriorate if these crimes are not stopped.
Regarding offenses committed online, Bangladesh’s legal framework is as follows:
On October 8, 2006, the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Act, 2006 was officially signed into law and put into effect. After that, in 2008 and 2009, the government introduced further amendments to the Act. In 2010, the government enacted regulations pertaining to information technology (Certificate Authority) in order to facilitate the more effective implementation of the Act. However, these rules by themselves are not sufficient. It is vital to change the current laws such as the Penal Code 1860, the Evidence Act 1872, and the Contract Act 1872, amongst others, in order to tackle the expanding difficulties that may be found in cyber space. It is anticipated that these Acts will be amended so that they are more in line with the requirements of the changing times. However, the Information and Communications Technology Act of 2006 has a few clauses that discuss the punishments for a variety of offenses relating to cyberspace. For example, the offenses that may be committed in cyberspace are outlined in subsection (1) of section 54 of this Act. The second part of subsection 54(2) reads as follows: “If any person commits offenses under the first subsection of this section, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to ten years, or with fine which may extend to ten lakhs of taka, or with both.”
We may also consider the provisions of section 56, which provide that
“If there is anyone—”
(a) with the intention to cause or knowing that he is likely to cause wrongful loss or damage to the public or any person, conducts any act and thus destroys, deletes, or modifies any information contained in a computer resource, or lowers its value or usefulness, or affects it injuriously by any means; (b) with the purpose to cause or knowing that he is likely to cause wrongful loss or damage to the public or any person; (c) with the knowledge that he is b) cause harm by illegally accessing any computer, computer network, or other electronic system that does not belong to him; in this case, the conduct will be considered an act of hacking; (c) Whoever commits an offense under sub-section (1) of this section, he shall be penalized with imprisonment for a period which may extend to ten years, or with fine which may increase to one crore taka, or with both."
It is clear that the issue of cybercrimes has been given attention by the legal system, as seen by the existence of certain stringent regulations regulating it.
The final word
Obviously, cybercrime is the newest kind of crime, and it is one of the crimes that is particularly difficult to suppress. But despite the complexity of the situation, we must not let it deter us from taking appropriate actions against cybercriminals. The rule of law alone is not sufficient; thus, we need to cultivate ethics and morals in both our personal and community life.
Our young people are easily distracted, so it is essential that they get the direction and attention that they need. Any form of cyber-invasion that may put people’s lives in jeopardy has to be met head-on by the state, which means it has to take every precaution necessary.
Some of the things that the government really must do include maintaining constant monitoring and improving existing countermeasures. People who use computers and internet services on a regular basis should also exercise extreme caution. We can only hope that our efforts to raise awareness and fight against cybercrime on a continuous basis will be successful.