Information Technology Act, 2021

In this article we will discuss Information Technology Act, 2021

In this article, we will discuss Information Technology Act, 2021. So, let’s get started.

Information Technology Act, 2021

  • Mandates Social Media to Exercise Greater Diligence:
  • IT Rules (2021) mandate social media platforms to exercise greater diligence with respect to the content on their platforms.
  • Establish a Grievance Officer:
  • They are required to establish a grievance redressal mechanism and remove unlawful and unfitting content within stipulated time frames.
  • The grievance officer of the platform’s redressal mechanism is responsible for receiving and resolving complaints of the users.
  • Draft Amendments Proposed:
  • Grievance Appellate Committee:
  • It proposed an additional level of oversight, namely, the ‘Grievance Appellate Committee’, functioning over and above the intermediary’s grievance redressal officer.
  • Broadly, in case a user is not satisfied with the resolution provided by the intermediary, she/he can appeal against the decision at the appellate rather than going directly to court.
  • However, this did not take away the user’s right to appeal in any other court.
  • Section 66A of IT Act 2000:
  • Section 66A empowered police to make arrests over what policemen, in terms of their subjective discretion, could construe as “offensive” or “menacing” or for the purposes of causing annoyance, inconvenience, etc.
  • It prescribed the punishment for sending messages through a computer or any other communication device like a mobile phone or a tablet, and a conviction could fetch a maximum of three years in jail.
  • The court struck down Section 66A as unconstitutional in 2015 . However, it is still being used in several instances.
  • Section 69A of IT Act 2000:
  • It confers on the Central and State governments the power to issue directions “to intercept, monitor or decrypt any information generated, transmitted, received or stored in any computer resource”.
  • The grounds on which these powers may be exercised are:
  • In the interest of the sovereignty or integrity of India, defence of India, the security of the state.
  • Friendly relations with foreign states.
  • Public order, or for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognizable offence relating to these.
  • For investigating any offence.
  • Section 69A enables the Centre to ask any agency of the government, or any intermediary, to block access to the public of any information generated, transmitted, received or stored or hosted on any computer resource.
  • Any such request for blocking access must be based on reasons given in writing.

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