The city police are taking a slew of measures to curb cyber crime recently.
This includes free-and-fair registration of all cases, detecting more cases, sending proposals to the home department for upgrading cyber units and most importantly spreading awareness among the people.
Deputy commissioner of police (DCP), cyber, Sachin Patil, said, “In today’s information technology era, crimes have crossed the physical boundaries and entered the realm of cyber space. Various cyber crimes in nature of hacking, impersonation by identity theft, lottery, frauds, skimmer frauds, cyber stalking, ransom-ware are on the rise. Apart from increasing detection of cases to create a deterrent effect, awareness of general public and imbibing some safeguards and precautions is required.”
The Mumbai crime branch, under whom the cyber police operates, has sent at least three proposals to the home department looking at the increasing number of cases. Among the proposals, one is to have four more police stations in Mumbai where cyber crime cases will be registered.
This will also mean a four-time increase in the existing manpower.
At present, there are three police inspectors (PI) with each having 200 cases on their heads.
A deputy commissioner of police (DCP) monitors the entire investigations with two assistant commissioners of police (ACP). Six assistant police inspectors (API) and four police sub-inspectors (PSI) assist the PI because according to the rulebook they cannot be the investigating officer of the case.
The local police can also register cyber crime cases and seek specific technical help from the cyber police station in each of the regions of Mumbai police viz. south, central, eastern, western and north regions.
“If the local police register crime cases it will help us reduce our paper work. They will get all the technical help from us after which they can lodge an FIR, arrest the accused and file charge sheet by themselves,” said a cyber police officer.
The second proposal is one-rank promotion while working with the cyber police. The crime branch has proposed that the assistant inspector be promoted to the rank of police inspector till the time he is working with the cyber police. This will enable him/her to be the investigating officer of any case as the law states that only an inspector-level officer can probe cyber crimes.
The third proposal is of increasing the number of courts trying cyber crime cases to ensure quick disposal. The police said a lot of cyber-crime cases are pending in court since 2009. There are instances where the victims lost interest and the cases were compounded. As many as 130 cases are pending in court and around 600 are pending investigations. Some cases have got compounded as the victims lose interest. Till now there has been no conviction.
Apart from this, the cyber police conducts seminars, lectures for students of schools and colleges and also for companies and businessmen. They have also conducted campaigns to spread awareness against crimes involving Facebook.