SOCIAL MEDIA – CHANGING RULES OF THE GAME!

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SOCIAL MEDIA – CHANGING RULES OF THE GAME!

While social media has changed the most basic rules of human engagement, primarily it being mediated by a screen and a server in a far off land and every single transaction being monetised. This is social and the business side. We have found most of our lost friends, acquaintances and relatives through this medium. Encryption is inbuilt but it has the capability to be monetised. Paradoxical as it may be, that is our existence. Social media has an anti-social side, getting from grim to grimmer, while the champions of privacy are battling it out in their own stupor.

We all live in nation – states, that is the way the world is politically and emotionally divided. The primary duty of the state is to protect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the nation and protect the life and liberty of it’s citizens. Any country which does not have the capability to intercept information, data and communication, which is antithetical to these two stated goals, is a blind state. This is the state in which states have landed. From San Bernardino case to the lynching cases in India, there are endless varieties of such crimes, propagated by this medium. It is primarily a free run for a money spinning machine.

Sec 79 of IT Act expects the intermediaries, that is the social media platforms to inform its users what not to host and in case of such an instance, they must bring down the content within 36 hours and preserve record of 180 days for investigation. Has this brought sanity? No. Right to speech & expression activists are up in arms. China is a different story but now rest of the world is no mood to leave social media scot free. “The Five Eyes – US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand – have demanded access to decrypted data to fight global terrorism and for the investigation of serious crimes.”

Australia enacted the first anti-encryption law in the democratic world on Dec 6, 2018. ” UK’s Investigatory Powers Act of 2016 mandated social media platforms help agencies with ‘equipment interference,’ an euphemism for encryption.” US talks of responsible encryption; lawful access with judicial authorisation. Both Privacy and Security have to co-exist, the world is trying to find the golden mean.

THE DAYS OF UNBRIDLED PRIVACY SEEMS TO BE NUMBERED.

Sanjay Sahay

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