Strengthening Cybersecurity: Home Ministry Authorizes I4C to Issue Takedown Notices Under IT Act

Posted On - 18 May, 2024 • By - King Stubb & Kasiva


In the dynamic realm of cybersecurity, where the digital landscape undergoes constant evolution, governments worldwide grapple with the challenges posed by cybercrimes. India, too, is diligently fortifying its cybersecurity infrastructure to effectively combat emerging threats. A significant stride was recently achieved with the Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C) being granted official authority by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to issue direct takedown orders under Section 79(b)(3) of the Information Technology (IT) Act 2000. This milestone underscores the government’s unwavering commitment to enhancing cybersecurity measures, ensuring the populace’s safety in the digital sphere.[1]

Background and Context:

The proliferation of digital technologies has ushered in an era of unprecedented connectivity and convenience, but it has also amplified the risks faced by individuals, organizations, and governments. Cybercrimes encompass a wide range of illicit activities, including data breaches, financial frauds such as theft from online accounts, and cyber warfare, where nations engage in hostile actions through internet networks. The phenomenon extends to terrorism, with certain groups leveraging online platforms to disseminate fear by infiltrating critical infrastructures like power grids. Given the rapid proliferation of these crimes, it is imperative to adopt robust measures to combat them effectively.

Recognizing this imperative, the Indian government established the Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C) in October 2018. Positioned as a central hub, the I4C serves as a focal point for coordinating efforts among various stakeholders to address cybercrimes, thereby emerging as the cornerstone of all anti-cybercrime endeavors within our nation.

Empowering the I4C:

The recent endorsement of the Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C) by the Ministry of Home Affairs marks a significant milestone in India’s cybersecurity landscape. With this official sanction, the government aims to streamline and expedite I4C’s efforts in combating illicit online content by granting it the authority to issue prompt takedown notices directly to intermediaries and internet platforms. This conferred power, in accordance with Section 79(b)(3) of the IT Act 2000, equips I4C to play an active role in identifying and eradicating illegal materials from digital platforms.

Streamlining the Process:

Prior to this authorization, the responsibility for issuing takedown notices was dispersed across multiple entities, including the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). This fragmented approach frequently led to delays and operational challenges in addressing illegal online content, given the inherent difficulties in interagency coordination. By endowing I4C with the authority to issue takedown orders, the government aims to enhance efficiency and expedite the removal of unlawful content. This strategic move is geared towards bolstering cybersecurity and safeguarding the interests of individuals in the digital realm.

Section 79 of the IT Act, 2000, offers intermediaries safe harbor protection from liability concerning third-party content hosted on their platforms. However, it is crucial to emphasize that this safeguard hinges on intermediaries promptly removing or restricting access to illegal content upon receiving a directive from the appropriate government authority. With the I4C now authorized to issue takedown notices, it becomes imperative for intermediaries to adhere to their directives to avoid legal repercussions (Cyber Law India).[2]

Impact on Cybersecurity Ecosystem:

Granting the Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C) the authority to issue takedown notices represents a significant advancement in India’s cybersecurity infrastructure. By centralizing the power to combat illegal online content, the government aims to bolster its capacity to mitigate and curtail cyber threats. This initiative aligns with broader efforts to foster a secure and resilient digital environment for individuals and businesses operating in the online sphere.[3]

In conclusion, the Ministry of Home Affairs’ decision to empower the I4C to issue takedown notices under the IT Act 2000 signifies a proactive step towards enhancing India’s cybersecurity framework. By enabling the I4C to play an active role in combating cybercrimes, the government demonstrates its commitment to safeguarding the digital realm. However, effective implementation of this strategy hinges on seamless collaboration among all stakeholders, ensuring robust defense against cybersecurity challenges and safeguarding our nation’s digital interests.




King Stubb & Kasiva,
Advocates & Attorneys

Click Here to Get in Touch

New Delhi | Mumbai | Bangalore | Chennai | Hyderabad | Mangalore | Pune | Kochi
Tel: +91 11 41032969 | Email: