DailyPost 1898

The citizens in this country can be best described as digital lame ducks. In the all-pervasive digital world, where do they go, they are not aware of. The complexity of today’s world was bound to be simplified for our common masses by the powers that be and for the digitally literate ones too. They know how to use it but they do not know the lurking dangers behind it. Even sharing of OTPs and other passcodes etc with the unknown happens even to this day. Passwords, the way we use might be another joke, cracked for most at the fall of hat. What percentage of the Indian population understands the real utility, value and the danger behind it. Who takes the responsibility, the government or the company, is a billion dollar question.

The most intriguing fact of this imbroglio is that it is so beautifully created that none of the two have a face. A person with you can interact and get a reply. Once you become a victim you become lost in the wilderness of the digital and governmental maze. They always get scot-free while the hapless citizen keeps taking circles. Cyber criminals used Google to dupe people. The Delhi court has asked the police to investigate the tech giant. How did we reach this place? The judge observed ”insufficient indifference of the Google authorities.” There has been a criminal conspiracy angle which the police has come up with. They have argued that Google was a ”partner in crime” for ”allegedly receiving Rs. 30 lakhs from cyber criminals to feature their fake website on its top charts.”

What is fake and what is not in the digital world? Who will be able to tell us; the regulatory agencies, the cyber cells, the digital intelligence agencies or the cyber crime police. Or on the other side, the IT behemoths who are making billions and trillions of dollars cumulatively. Certainly, the citizen can’t get enlightened on his own. Now can any NGO or any self help group come to your rescue. It is a different world from the Cyber Awareness programs being dished out to the students and the masses with so much fanfare. The irony of the situation is that the accused men in this instant case of a cyber fraud racket; made fake websites to target people who were trying to register cyber-crime complaints.

The Judge has ordered the DCP Cyber Cell to investigate the role of Google authorities for conspiracy and abetment. He was conscious of his limited role of hearing the bail applications. Nonetheless, the harsh realities of today’s existence need to come to our life’s center stage, otherwise we will be lost forever. ASJ Rana said, ”Google search has become an indispensable part of one’s daily life” and then he summed up very succinctly, ”if you are not paying for the product, you are the product. The citizens have been rendered vulnerable and exposed by insouciant indifference of Google authorities.”


Sanjay Sahay

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