Revenge Porn Website Founder Arrested For Hacking Charges By FBI

Revenge Porn Website Founder Arrested For Hacking Charges By FBIIn the past few days we have witnessed coordinated law enforcement activities among various law enforcement agencies of the world. For instance, the Karnataka CID is investigating possible involvement of Enstage Software’s staff in international ATM heist. Similarly, an international hacking syndicate has been busted by Indian CBI with the help of FBI.

Now it has been reported by TOI that the founder of a so-called ‘revenge porn website’ has been arrested and charged by the FBI for allegedly hacking into email accounts and stealing nude photographs to post them online without consent. The concept of revenge porn itself is flawed one and in many cases a ransom is demanded to remove the objectionable photographs from such a website.

Besides violation of privacy rights, this concept also violates the laws pertaining to pornography in many jurisdictions. In fact, as per the Information Technology Act, 2000 of India publication of online obscene material is a serious offence.

Hunter Moore, 27, often described as ‘the most hated man on the internet’, was arrested at his home in Woodland, California. A second man, Charles Evens, 25, was also arrested in the Studio City area of Los Angeles. They face charges including conspiracy, computer hacking and aggravated identity theft as part of a 15-count federal grand jury indictment issued this week. Evens pleaded not guilty before a federal judge. Moore did not enter a plea and remains in custody in Northern California. If found guilty, they could spend decades behind bars.

According to the 13-page indictment, Moore allegedly conspired with Evens to illegally gain access to victims’ computers to obtain explicit photographs for the purpose of revenge. Moore instructed Evens to hack e-mail accounts in exchange for money. From 2010 to 2012, Moore ran a revenge porn website, which allowed visitors to upload pictures of ex-partners or people who have participated in ‘sexting’ and sent nude pictures of themselves.

His arrest comes shortly after a new California law banned revenge porn websites, making it illegal to post identifiable nude pictures online without consent or with the intent of causing emotional distress. The penalty carries a $1,000 (£617) fine and up to six months in prison.

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Bangalore’s Cyber Police Facing Investigation Difficulties With Facebook

Bangalore’s Cyber Police Facing Investigation Difficulties With FacebookIt is a commonly known fact that companies like Google, Facebook, etc are actively and openly violating the laws of India. It is equally well known that Indian government is just a moot spectator and helpless victim in this entire scenario. Since there is no techno legal framework that India can enforce, these companies are enjoying the profitability without any accountability towards Indian laws.

Basically, these companies are taking undue advantage of the conflict of laws in cyberspace. However, this sort of chaos and anarchy is not at all possible without active support of Indian government and this is exactly what is happening. Now Google’s online defamation case of India has reached the Supreme Court of India for hearing, something can be done on the judicial side as Indian government had miserably failed to curb this nuisance.

The Bangalore cyber crime cell is presently trying to track few online offenders at Facebook that have violated Indian laws. However, Facebook is not at all cooperating with the Bangalore police and this is hampering the cyber crime investigation. By citing the privacy policies and United State’s laws, companies like Google and Facebook are actually hampering Indian cyber crime investigations. Facebook sometimes declines information if a post is older than a month. They also insist on a letter rogatory procedure in some cases, informs D Roopa, DIG (economic offences), CID, Bangalore.

In a recent case, members of a trust in Mysore had filed a complaint, saying someone was posting objectionable comments on a fake Facebook account. The trust realised it was a fake account only when false allegations were being made through the account. Facebook sought a letter rogatory to give out the IP (internet protocol) address and other details. Facebook’s India office in Hyderabad does not provide details, and refers complaints to its US centre.

We at Perry4Law have been suggesting for long that all Subsidiary/Joint Ventures Companies in India, especially those dealing in Information Technology and Online Environment, must mandatorily establish a server in India. Otherwise, such Companies and their Websites should not be allowed to operate in India. The Ministry of Home Affairs, India and Intelligence Bureau (IB) are already exploring this possibility.

A “Stringent Liability” for Indian Subsidiaries dealing in Information Technology and Online Environment must be established by Laws of India. More stringent online advertisement and e-commerce provisions must be formulated for Indian Subsidiary Companies and their Websites.

The sooner these suggestions are implemented by Indian government the better it would for the law and order situation of India.

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International Hacking Syndicate Busted By Indian CBI With The Help Of FBI

International Hacking Syndicate Busted By Indian CBI With The Help Of FBIConflict of laws in cyberspace and authorship attribution for cyber crimes are two of the most prominent problems in dealing with cyber crimes having international dimensions. This is the reason why the law enforcement agencies around the world cooperate and collaborate while dealing with transnational cyber crimes.

One such transnational cyber crime syndicate has been busted by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) of India with the help of Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) of United States of America.

The Hindu has reported about a coordinated law enforcement action by CBI against a group of crackers operating from India, U.S. China and Romania. The CBI on Friday arrested a Pune-based mastermind who allegedly ran two websites offering services for cracking into email accounts. Some people associated with the Indian Premier League are also under the scanner for attempting to hire the engineer, who had gained access to more than 900 accounts, of which 171 belong to the victims located in India. IPL match fixing investigations are already under progress.

The accused, identified as Amit Vikram Tiwari, 33, was arrested in 2003 for allegedly cheating a Mumbai-based credit card processing company by generating fake e-transactions through a website. CBI investigations revealed that Amit had been operating two websites that offered hacking services at $250-$500 a client. The two websites are presently down, may be for conducting proper e-discovery and cyber forensics investigations.

Between February 2011 and February 2013, Amit had accessed 900 accounts. Most of his clients were based abroad. Investigations are under way to ascertain whether the accused had also accessed bank accounts or had any role to play in any other illegal online activities. “The present operation is the outcome of a coordinated probe by the CBI, the FBI, Combating Organised Crime of Romania, and the Ministry of Public Security in China,” said a senior CBI officer.

The operation followed a tip-off by the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the U.S. a year ago on activities of a hacker who had gained access to Internet accounts. “The FBI shared with us the geographical location of the suspect, based on which we initiated the probe. A preliminary enquiry was instituted. Investigations revealed that the accused had been gaining unauthorised access to Internet accounts on behalf of his clients. We suspect that the targeted accounts belonged to individuals and corporate entities,” said the officer. Since the input came from the FBI, the investigators suspect that Amit might have accessed some “sensitive” Internet accounts.

Based on the findings, the agency registered two cases against Amit and unknown persons on charges of identity theft, criminal conspiracy and unauthorised break-in of Internet accounts under the Indian Penal Code and the Information Technology Act. The accused Amit was produced in a Pune court, which has granted us his transit remand. He is being brought to New Delhi for further interrogation. While his computers have been seized, we will also probe the role of his customers,” said the officer.

“The websites operated by the accused offered access to email accounts for $250-$500, which we suspect would be paid through Western Union or online money transfer website PayPal. On receipt of the order, the accused would hack into the email accounts concerned and send proof of it to the customers who would then make payments to get passwords and other particulars of the victims,” the officer said.

The cyber due diligence for Paypal and online payment transferors in India has still not been enforced. Similarly, the Bitcoins exchanges operating in India are not complying with Indian laws. In particular, the cyber law due diligence requirements (PDF), as prescribed by the Information Technology Act, 2000, is not at all followed by the e-commerce websites in general and online payment processing websites/companies operating in India in general. The cyber criminals and their syndicate take advantage of these loopholes of Indian laws.

In a related development, the federal prosecutors in U.S. have charged a Northridge man with hiring computer hackers. John Ross Jesensky, 30, allegedly paid $21,675 to a Chinese website in exchange for email account passwords, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. He faces up to one year in prison for the misdemeanor charge. Jesensky was one of five defendants charged by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in a series of cases filed in Los Angeles this week. Mark Anthony Townsend, 45, of Cedarville, Ark., and Joshua Alan Tabor, 29, of Prairie Grove, Ark., are accused of operating an email hacking website which affected nearly 6,000 email accounts. They each face up to five years in prison on felony charges.

Defendants in Michigan and New York also face charges for buying email passwords. Jesensky was scheduled to appear in court Friday afternoon. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, all of the defendants are expected to plead guilty in the coming weeks.

The U.S. cases were announced Friday after authorities in Romania, India and China arrested six more people on computer hacking charges. The international investigation coordinated by the FBI identified the operators of 10 hacking websites.

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Karnataka CID Investigating Possible Involvement Of Enstage Software’s Staff In International ATM Heist

Karnataka CID Investigating Possible Involvement Of Enstage Software’s Staff In International ATM HeistCyber crimes and banking industry are standing at a cross road. More and more banking frauds are reported in India these days. The banking industry of India is facing novel and innovative financial and banking frauds in India. For instance, Internet banking frauds, ATM frauds, RTGS frauds, etc have significantly increased in India. Similarly IT and cyber frauds in Indian companies are also increasing. The cyber law and cyber security trends of 2013 provided by Perry4Law have also proved this scenario.

The cyber security of banking segment of India is in poor condition. The online banking cyber security is not upto the mark despite repeated reminder by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). Even the regulations pertaining to security and risk mitigation measures for card present transactions in India have been brought into force by RBI.

However, despite various regulations and guidelines by RBI, the banks in India have not only failed to secure their online systems but they have also failed to secure the ATMs installed at their premises. As a result ATM frauds in India have significantly increased. Similarly, the mobile payment cyber security in India is also not in a proper state.

Sophisticated malware have also been specifically designed to target the banking industry of India. For instance, the Vskimmer Trojan designed to steal credit card information from Windows system is already in circulation. Similarly, the Malware Dump Memory Grabber is also targeting POS systems and ATMs of major U.S. banks. These malware are creating havoc in India and international levels.

Recently, the RAKBANK and Bank of Muscat Oman became victims of international ATM heist. The hacking prompted authorities in the US and Europe to launch an international manhunt. Authorities made arrests soon after in Germany and the US, and most of the money was recovered, with one of the ringleaders, being found dead in mysterious circumstances, with $100,000 in his possession.

The Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) of India has even started investigation in this international ATM heist case as it has Indian connections as well. However, till now nothing concrete has resulted from investigations made by India in this regard.

Now DNA India has reported that the Karnataka police have speeded up their investigation into the international ATM heist case. One of the payment processing company that was hacked into is a city-based company enStage Software, situated in Cambridge Road, Halasuru, which managed payments processing for Muscat Bank of the Sultanate of Oman. The Karnataka CID is now pursuing the case, after Muscat Bank complained that someone in enStage Software may have been involved in hacking its data center maintained by the provider. Earlier the case was investigated by Halasuru police and CCB (Central Crime Branch) and after local police could not probe this hi-tech and international case, the state DGP office asked CID (Economic Offence Wing) to pursue the case. Halasuru police registered a case under section 66(C) of IT Act-2000 and also under 420 and other sections of IPC. Since the case involved huge amount of money stolen, the case was transferred to Central Crime Branch (CCB). They investigated the case and found it difficult to probe as it involves international transactions and lack of cyber tools. Thus the DG&IGP transferred this case to CID for further investigation on December 23, 2013, sources said.

Sources said the CID obtained the statement of preliminary findings of Muscat Bank, details of 12 pre-paid travel cards, the usage and processing service agreement of enStage Software, Operation Processing Manual of Muscat Bank, final report of computer forensic investigation for investigation with the help of Cyber police. The CID may seek Interpol’s help to investigate the accused arrested in foreign countries.

The problem with the cases like these is that they are transnational in nature and the cyber criminals take advantage of the conflict of laws in cyberspace.  Further, we have no cyber forensics best practices in India. There is also an urgent need to strengthen cyber forensics and cyber crimes investigation capabilities of India. On the legislation front, India needs a new and better cyber law and the old one must be repealed. Indian law enforcement agencies must be well equipped with modern technologies and suitable trainings and Indian government must pay a special attention to modernisation of police force of India.

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SEBI Notified The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Procedure for Search and Seizure) Regulations, 2014

SEBI Notified The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Procedure for Search and Seizure) Regulations, 2014The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has been working hard to bring transparency and accountability in the securities field. Recently, SEBI declared that it would release corporate governance rules for the listed entities in India very soon. SEBI has also notified the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Procedure for Search and Seizure) Regulations, 2014 (PDF)

SEBI is deriving its powers regarding search and seizure from The Securities Laws (Amendment) Second Ordinance, 2013 (PDF) passed in September 2013. The Ordinance has conferring explicit powers on SEBI’s Chairman to authorise Investigating Authority or any other officer of SEBI to conduct search and seizure under the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 (PDF) (SEBI Act).

These regulations provide detailed procedures to be followed for issuance of warrants and execution of search and seizure orders, among others. Besides, a necessary framework has been provided for the safeguards to be adopted during different stages of search and seizure and to protect the rights of those persons subjected to search and the obligations of the authorised persons.

In regard to the rights of the persons being searched, the norms state that the occupant of the place being searched can see the warrant and obtain a copy of it, can verify the identity of the authorised officer and officials assisting him, to be present during the search and seizure operation and to have copy of document(s) seized or take extracts therefrom. Such an occupant would also have rights to have a copy of any statement recorded during search and seizure and to put his own mark of identification on the document seized on recording the description of such mark of identification.

According to the new norms, the authorised personnel of SEBI could seize documents including drawings and paintings, videotapes and computerised material, among others. For searching computers, the norms lay out that an authorised officer could use any reasonable measures to access a computer system or other data storage device, which the person being searched has in physical possession.

With more and more work are now managed by computers and information and communication technology (ICT), India needs to strengthen its cyber forensics and cyber crimes investigation capabilities. For instance, the economic offences wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police is investigating the Rs 425 Crore QNet Scam. The investigation would require sound techno legal expertise and possible use of e-discovery and cyber forensics methods. The search and seizure regulations of SEBI would further add the requirement to possess techno legal expertise on the part of investigation officers in India.

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Economic Offences Wing (EOW) Of The Mumbai Police Speeds Up Rs 425 Crore QNet Scam Investigation

Economic Offences Wing (EOW) Of The Mumbai Police Speeds Up Rs 425 Crore QNet Scam InvestigationFraudulent multi level marketing (MLM) companies have been operating in India for long. Till now the regulatory norms of India have failed to curb these MLM companies and the frauds committed through them. Although the Indian Companies Act, 2013 (PDF) has been formulated to curb corporate frauds yet a dedicated fraudulent MLM regulations is need of the hour.

The powers of Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) were also enhanced so that they can effectively deal with corporate frauds and crimes in India. Similarly, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) would release corporate governance rules for the listed entities in India very soon. SEBI has also notified the Securities And Exchange Board Of India (Procedure For Search And Seizure) Regulations, 2014 (PDF).

The fraudulent multi level marketing (MLM) companies’ website should be blocked in India. This is so because these MLM websites may have server located abroad and may not be approachable even with the help of mutual legal assistance treaty (MLAT) between India and other countries.

Similar on the line of MLM companies, the Bitcoins exchanges in India are also flourishing unregulated. Meanwhile it has been reported that Indian corporates are lobbying for regulated digital currency in India.

Recently the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) cautioned users of virtual currencies against various risks, including legal risks. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) also searched few Bitcoin websites in India as it believes that Bitcoins money can be used for hawala transactions and funding terror operations. In these circumstances the role of Indian corporates for lobbying for regulated digital currencies in India must be analysed.

Meanwhile, the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police is investigating the multi level marketing scam involving the firm QNet. India Today has reported that the EOW of Mumbai Police is making all efforts to search former world billiards champion and Padma Bhushan Michael Ferreira in connection with the alleged Rs 425-crore QNet scam, whereas the latter is putting similar effort to get the citizenship of another country.

Few days back, the EOW has issued a lookout notice against the 74-year old sports ace for his alleged involvement in the marketing scam. “Till now, he has not turned up for questioning. Three weeks ago, we had sent summon to his residence, which was followed by a lookout notice, but there is no response from his side,” said a police officer. In case, Michael fails to be present before the investigating officers, a second summon would be sent soon, declaring him, officially “absconding”.

Ferreira, who is holding 80 per cent shareholding in Vihaan Direct Selling Pvt Ltd, which operates QNet business in India. A documentary, video, and photo evidence indicated that Michael might be the big player behind this decade-old pyramid scheme that is fooling thousands of investors in India. “This scheme has siphoned off hundreds of crores out of India. In fact, there is high possibility that money has been laundered to other countries in Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa, especially Egypt,” an EOW officer said.

However, a press release issued by Vihaan Direct Selling Pvt Ltd, has denied all these allegations. Ajay Chanam, spokesperson for QNet in India, said, “the situation surrounding QNet in India and in Mumbai particularly appears to be some form of orchestrated sustained attack on the company to undermine our reputation and prevent us from competing fairly and openly in India”.

QNet is quite confident that “as true facts emerge, authorities will also see this clearly as a calculated attack on QNet and take appropriate action against those responsible for scheming this at the first place.” However, the press release remained silent on Ferreira issue.

Till now, the EOW had arrested nine team leaders of the QNet for allegedly duping investors by selling products like magnetic disks, herbal products and holiday schemes through fraudulent practices. They are out on bail.

According to Moneylife, the EOW has also received a complaint against Bollywood actor Boman Irani and his son Danesh in the QNet scam. According to sources, police have found transactions worth Rs18 crore in Danesh’s bank accounts related with QNet. The actor was also present at several promotional events organised by Qnet in India.

The Financial Express has further reported that EOW has frozen Danesh Irani’s bank account, blocking his Rs 25 lakh. Two fixed deposits were linked to his bank account. Cash and FDs collectively valued at Rs 25 lakh were found in the account. The scrutinisation of Danesh’s bank account revealed that about Rs 40 lakh had been received from QNet (over a period of time) in 2013. “We are verifying to ascertain as to what sort of job he had performed, for which the QNet paid him about Rs 40 lakh,” the officer said adding that Danesh would be summoned soon.

Complainant Gurupreet Singh Anand, who had filed an FIR against the QNet in August last year, has recently approached the EOW, with a two-page complaint giving the details of alleged links of Danesh. Gurupteet had claimed that he shared Danesh Irani’s QNet membership details with the investigators and his account had shown that he carried out Rs 18 crore worth transactions and because of which he received substantial amount of commission.

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India Plans Technological Upgrade Of Border Broadcast Infrastructure Due To Chinese Broadcasts

India Plans Technological Upgrade Of Border Broadcast Infrastructure Due To Chinese BroadcastsTerritorial border security of India is facing novel challenges. While some of them pertains to traditional border threats and challenges yet other pertain to exclusive use and abuse of information and communication technology (ICT) at the borders. Telecom infrastructure cyber vulnerabilities have further added to Indian woes. For instance, recently Huawei was accused of breaching national security of India by hacking base station controller in Andhra Pradesh.

As ICT is developing, it is also challenging the border security and management of India as well. The latest to add to this challenge is the problem faced by India due to broadcasts from Chinese territories.

The Hindustan Times has reported that along an extensive and ill-defined Indo-China border, from Ladakh in the north to Bihar in the east, Chinese radio and television fare streams freely into Indian homes, aiming to enhance China’s sphere of influence.

The crucial point here is that if something like this can happen for the simple reason of inadequate border telecom infrastructure what can be done to further the objects cyber terrorism, cyber espionage and cyber warfare.

In these circumstances, critical infrastructure protection in India needs a special focus. For instance, Huawei and ZTE are already in telecom security tangle and India is considering norms for import and testing of telecom equipments in India. ZTE was recently accused of assisting conducting of e-surveillance in Iran. The security agencies of India have even suggested use of indigenously made cyber security softwares.

For six hours every day, the Chinese broadcast a rich mix of multi-lingual news, political commentary, interviews, cultural programmes and even Mandarin language classes from across stations based in Nepal. In pockets with weak Indian signals, Indian listeners are warmly greeted by the Chinese radio, with its growing Nepali network. What is more worrisome is the proposal of Nepal to turn the country into a free wifi zone.

Amid China’s growing engagement with Nepal, the state-run China Radio International (CRI) three years ago acquired the “downlink” permission to rebroadcast its programmes across Nepal, with Nepali, Chinese and English content.

The CRI now has a Kathmandu bureau staffed by locals and its programmes are further relayed by more than 200 smaller Nepali FM stations into India with a “domino effect”. The programmes have alarmed India’s security establishment, prompting the information and broadcasting ministry to mount a technological upgrade of border broadcast infrastructure through Prasar Bharati, India’s public broadcaster.

After several rounds of interministerial consultations, involving the home ministry and the National Security Adviser, among others, the information and broadcasting ministry has planned a Rs. 3,500-crore “Broadcasting Infrastructure and Network Development” fund for Prasar Bharati to ramp up border transmission facilities by state-owned Doordarshan and All India Radio.

The proposal, which has been cleared by the finance ministry and is being moved before the Cabinet, also aims to “counter terrorist activities” across the border. India aims to retain its clout with Nepal after the 2006 ouster of monarchy, a steadfast Indian ally, with free trade totalling nearly $2 billion (about Rs. 11,000 crore). China, jockeying for more influence, has more than doubled its annual aid from $22 million (about Rs. 121 crore) in 2009, mostly for infrastructure projects.

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Bitcoins Money Can Be Used For Hawala Transactions And Funding Terror Operations: Enforcement Directorate

Bitcoins Money Can Be Used For Hawala Transactions And Funding Terror Operations Enforcement DirectorateBitcoins received much attention in the last quarter of 2013. So much was the entrepreneurial excitement and regulatory scrutiny that Bitcoins was also covered by the Cyber Law Trends and Developments of India 2013 (PDF) by Perry4Law and Perry4Law’s Techno Legal Base (PTLB).

The legality of Bitcoins in India was always in doubts. However, in order to earn money, many people and companies were dealing in Bitcoins in India with great disregard to the cyber law due diligence requirements and in active violation of the Internet intermediary liability rules framed under the Information Technology Act, 2000. Realising the gravity of the situation, the RBI cautioned users of virtual currencies against various risks. These include legal risks as well.

Bitcoin users in India are vulnerable to legal actions of diverse nature and many Bitcoin websites in India can be prosecuted in due course of time. The Income Tax Overseas Units (ITOUs) of India have been established in foreign countries to curb black money. With the present corporate environment of India fast changing, taking Indian laws for granted by the Bitcoin websites is not a good strategy.

Meanwhile, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) searched two Bitcoins websites and their offices. In the present non compliance environment, more such searches and arrests are anticipated. As per TOI, the sources in the ED have revealed that money exchanged through Bitcoins can be used for hawala transactions and, in some cases, to fund terror operations. However, Bitcoin trader Nilam Doctor, who has been declared absconding by ED officials, denies that the virtual currency is illegal.

As many as 411 customer accounts and details involving transactions running into lakhs of rupees were recovered during the raid on the office of buysellbitco.in. The racket was being run by a software professional named, Mahendra Gupta.

The sources said that most of Gupta’s customers are from outside Gujarat. “We are doing a background check on each and every customer, particularly those involved in transactions worth more than Rs 10 lakh,” said an ED official. This first-ever raid on Bitcoin traders which began on late Thursday evening ended on Friday morning.

“Any individual can have several wallet addresses in which money can be stored virtually as Bitcoins and used for transactions. It’s a complex chain and very difficult to detect. The ramifications of this unmonitored trading can be huge,” said a senior official. The arrested traders will be charged under section 3 of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).

Mahendra Gupta had developed software for a Bitcoin trading platform for an Australian company and accepted payments in Bitcoins. He later developed a replica of the same platform and began trading in India. During the raid, 13 Bitcoins worth Rs 6 lakh were recovered from Gupta’s possession.

The owner of the other Bitcoin website’s office that was raided, rbitco.in, was declared absconding by ED officials. “According to our information, Nilam Doctor is in Mauritius,” said the ED official. Doctor is an alumni of LD Engineering College (1983 batch) and B K School of Management (1985). He operates two companies in Mauritius and US which too trade in Bitcoins. Commenting on the report published on the TOI website, Doctor has stated: “Hawala and money-laundering are done in cash and not in Bitcoins. They are open on ‘blockchain’ for the government to check.”

Hyderabad-based unocoin.com and Bangalore based inrbtc.com Bitcoin trading websites are also under scanner. All the four website owners had held a national conference on Bitcoins in Bangalore on December 14 and 15 to popularize the concept of Bitcoins.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) must use e-discovery and cyber forensics methods to detect possible legal violations by Bitcoin websites. Till digital evidence provides valuable insight about the nature and manner of commission of crimes under Indian laws, if any, nothing can be claimed in a concrete manner.

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Cyber Law Trends And Developments Of India 2013

Cyber Law Trends And Developments Of India 2013In continuation of the Cyber Law trends and development in India, Perry4Law and Perry4Law’s Techno Legal Base (PTLB) have once again discussed the Cyber Law Trends and Developments of India 2013 (PDF).

Some of the significant trends and development in this field in 2013 that have been discussed in this research report include cyber law due diligence requirements in India, Internet intermediary liability in India, telecom companies violations in India, e-discovery requirements in India, corporate frauds in India, Indo American cyber crime cooperation, corruption and technology related due diligence, cyber harassment and cyber stalking in India, e-commerce issues, legality of Bitcoins in India, conflict of laws in cyberspace, e-mail policy of India, cyber crimes against wildlife in India, child porn nuisance, online gambling in India, online pharmacies in India, MLM companies frauds in India, civil liberties protection in cyberspace, e-surveillance in India, Internet governance in India and domain name protection in India.

It is a very comprehensive cyber law trends and development analysis by Perry4Law and PTLB and we hope that our viewers and readers would find it worth reading.

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Enforcement Directorate (ED) Searched Seven Digital Cash LLP Office And Website For Selling And Buying Bitcoins In India

Enforcement Directorate (ED) Searched Seven Digital Cash LLP Office And Website For Selling And Buying Bitcoins In IndiaThe legality of Bitcoins in India was always in doubts. However, in order to earn money, many people and companies were dealing in Bitcoins in India with great disregard to the cyber law due diligence requirements and in active violation of the Internet intermediary liability rules framed under the Information Technology Act, 2000.

Almost all of the e-commerce websites in India are violating the laws of India especially the cyber law of India and Bitcoins dealers are no exception. In fact, websites dealing in Bitcoins are  also violating financial laws of India including the money laundering laws and foreign exchange laws.

Many countries like China, France, Thailand, Norway, etc have either regulated the use of Bitcoins or they have completely banned them in their jurisdictions. But the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and Indian government were slow in reacting to the issue. Meanwhile, Bitcoins frauds and crimes are increasing world over, including in India.

Realising the gravity of the situation, the RBI cautioned users of virtual currencies against various risks. These include legal risks as well. With the present advisory, the websites and individuals dealing in Bitcoins in any manner whatsoever must comply with the techno legal requirements of Indian laws. Otherwise, they may find themselves in big trouble.

And this is exactly what has happened. As per India Today, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) conducted its first searches on a Bitcoin trader in Ahmedabad. Searches were conducted on Seven Digital Cash LLP which owns a Bitcoin website – www.buysellbitco.in based in Ahmedabad. “We have conducted searches at 2-3 locations of Seven Digital Cash LLP and its website. The company was involved in buying and selling of Bitcoins in India, operating from Ahmedabad,” an ED official confirmed. The website www.buysellbitco.in has stopped operating online soon after the searches.

Under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), ED is taking action on suspicion that “these Bitcoin traders might be doing hawala transaction in the name of virtual currency trading.” An ED official says, “We have started our searches with Ahmedabad – which is also the major base of Bitcoin traders, but in the coming days our other teams could conduct similar searches on other companies and websites involved in Bitcoin trading in various other metro cities.”

Thus, either the Bitcoins stakeholders must comply with the laws of India or they must shut down their websites and business in their own interest.

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