Centre to reconsider ‘safe harbour’ clause in IT law
Why in news:
- The Union government recently formally outlined the Digital India Act, 2023, which is a broad overhaul of the Information Technology Act, 2000.
- The government is reconsidering a key aspect of cyberspace — ‘safe harbour’.
- Safe harbour refers to the principle that the socalled ‘intermediaries’ on the Internet are not responsible for what third parties post on their website.
- This is the principle that allows social media platforms to avoid liability for posts made by users.
Safe Harbour Principle (Section 79 Of Information Technology Act 2000):
- Section 79 of the Information Technology Act 2000 introduced the safe harbour immunity clause.
- This clause protected an intermediary from being held liable for third-party content on its platform – provided that the intermediary observed ‘due diligence’ as prescribed by the Central Government.
- In cases where the ‘due diligence’ was not followed by the intermediary as prescribed by the Central Government, it was then made liable for the third-party’s actions even if the same was done without the knowledge of the intermediaries.
Syllabus: Prelims + Mains; GS3- Indian Economy