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Internet Users should thoroughly screen Personal Information shared Online to avoid being ‘Online Harassment’ Target: Report

Use strong passwords with a mix of different types of characters, including alphabets, numbers and special characters

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A person working on laptop (Representational image), Pixabay

New Delhi, December 6, 2016: A day after the Supreme Court sought responses from three internet search engines on sharing videos related to sexual offences and cybercrime on Facebook, a Delhi-based law firm has formulated recommendations to help users avoid being a target of online abuse or harassment.

Besides increasing cases of sexual assault videos being uploaded online, there is also an increasing issue of people facing cyber abuse and harassment.

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In a new report, Software Freedom law Centre, a non-profit legal services organisation, said an internet user should thoroughly screen the personal information shared online.

“Be very careful about what personal information you make publicly available and refrain from providing any information apart from that which is absolutely essential for its purpose. Do not feel obligated to fill out all fields when registering online and avoid providing identifying information such as birth-date and place in required fields,” the report said.

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“Dedicate an email ID for social-media purposes that is dedicated solely for use while signing up and/or using social media services. Do not use this ID for personal communication purposes and avoid uploading photographs that identify you or your location,” it added.
Instead of using real given name, using a pseudonym maintains anonymity and keeps one safe. Also, keep a tab on information others post about you and if something concerns you about privacy, let your friends and family know about it.

“Use strong passwords with a mix of different types of characters, including alphabets, numbers and special characters and change them periodically. Also, review your service providers’ privacy policies,” the report added.

A bench of Justice Madan B. lokur and Justice Uday Umesh lalit on Monday sought responses from – Google India, Yahoo India, Microsoft Corporation (India) ltd. and Facebook — by January 9 on NGO Prajwala’s plea seeking a defined place where one could report such rape videos and seek their blocking.

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The court’s notices for response came during the course of hearing of a letter by Hyderabad-based non-governmental organisation Prajwala along with two rape videos. Two videos submitted in a pen drive showed a man raping a woman and another man filming it.

The NGO’s lawyer Aparna Bhat said videos of sexual offences are shot and posted online, and pleaded for court directions to them to take steps to curb cybercrime. (IANS)

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Mercy for the Nirbhaya Rapists?

Gender discrimination is the root of many evils. While keeping the aspiration of females down, certain males have committed many wrongs in the past.

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Nirbhaya
The Nirbhaya incident in Delhi was “instrumental” in bringing about a kind of gender awareness renaissance in India.

By Salil Gewali

Gender discrimination is the root of many evils. While keeping the aspiration of females down, certain males have committed many wrongs in the past. Apart from various kinds of physical tortures, the mental tortures undergone by defenseless females are endless. Within the confinement of four-walls innumerable sins are still being committed which mostly go unreported. However, it was Nirbhaya’s rape incident in Delhi that was “instrumental” in bringing about a kind of gender awareness renaissance in India. Post-Nirbhaya incident, a lot many changes in the laws have been made. The safety and security of women have been prioritized, the nation-wide the whole police departments have been sensitized, to a greater extent the road transportation has been made women-friendly.

Nirbhaya rape
The public is right and more sensible now to point out the “hard cruelty” with which the gang had sexually tortured Nirbhaya that night.

Thanks to the countless number of protests across the country condemning the six rapists. The people from all walks of life came together and relentlessly pressurized the government that the Nirbhaya convicts must be awarded capital punishment. Media’s contribution in the campaign is immeasurable. Alas, India’s judiciary is so annoyingly slow it has taken over 7 years to pronounce the death sentence.

Nirbhaya rape
Advocate Indira Jaising suggested that the convicts of Nirbhaya rape case could be “forgiven” by the parents.

However, now nothing could be so mind-blowing than the flood of condemnation against the comments by a veteran advocate and social activist Indira Jaising. Without a sense of guilt and potential backlash, she suggested that the convicts be “forgiven” by the parents. Jaising’s idea has clearly touched a raw nerve of the major population in the country. People’s anger is spilled well over social media. What is most noteworthy is the scathing condemnation directly from the horse mouth — the mother Asha Devi. A very bold lady, who determinedly fought for justice for so many years, thunders – “Who is Indira Jaising to give me such a suggestion? The whole country wants the convicts to be executed. Just because of people like her, justice is not done with rape victims,” Asha Devi aptly further adds — “Can’t believe how Jaising even dared to suggest such this; I met her many times over the years in Supreme Court, “not once” she asked for my well-being and today she is speaking for convicts. Such people earn a livelihood by supporting rapists; hence rape incidents don’t stop,”

The latter comments by the Nirbhaya’s mother clearly hint the doubt at the “integrity” of the advocate Ms. Jaising. How on earth that one who has not spoken a word of sympathy in spite of many encounters in the court can reserves the right to suggest that which offends the distressed victim party. Asha Devi deserves a salute for her boldness. Yes, India Jaising is one of the advocates who knocked the door of the Chief Justice of India in the middle of the night in July 2015 in order to seek the mercy for the dreaded terrorist Yakub Menon.

Nirbhaya rapists
In 2015, the Delhi Government proposed to award the Nirbhaya juvenile convicts with Rs 10000/- and a sewing machine.

Again, here is another bombshell to drop which many of us may have forgotten. Can we ever “forgive” for the shocking proposal in 2015 by Delhi Government to award the Nirbhaya juvenile convicts with Rs 10000/- and a sewing machine?  Who has approved such bizarre ideas and which leaders are responsible? What kind of lesson should the citizens take from this?

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I think the public is right and more sensible now to point out the “hard cruelty” with which the gang had sexually tortured Nirbhaya that night. They had used the iron-rod to inflict deep injuries upon the girl which is unspeakable, which is very unpardonable. So, given the increasing cases of rapes and subsequent inhumane cruelty and cold-blooded killings, Capital punishment can be the only answer and “one of the deterrents”. Before the divine retribution, the hard rod of punishment should not be spared at all. 

Salil Gewali is a well-known writer and author of ‘Great minds on India’. Twitter: @SGewali