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Court allows CBI to seek Pakistan’s help in hacking case

Posted by on February 15, 2011 0 Comment

New Delhi, Feb 15 (IANS) A Delhi court Tuesday allowed the CBI to take the Pakistan government’s help in identifying members of a hacker group “VERGIL” operating from that country and allegedly involved in defacing the official website of India’s Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPRD) in 2010.

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Vinod Yadav accepted the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) plea and issued a “letter of request” to the department of justice in Pakistan for obtaining information and documents relating to the case.

The court was satisfied that a case has been made out for issuing the “letter of request” (letter rogatory).

“The CBI has been able to make out a good case for issuance of ‘letter of request’ under section 166 (A) of the Criminal Procedure Code in favour of the department of justice in Pakistan for obtaining the information and documents,” said the court.

The CBI registered a case on the basis of a complaint received from the director general of BPRD that its official website (www.bprd.gov.in) stopped functioning from March 12, 2010, and the website was defaced by a Pakistani hacker group “VERGIL”.

CBI’s Special Additional Public Prosecutor Atul Sharma submitted before the court that the site contained details of police development and research, training, various police commission reports, police reforms, events and other information.

He apprised the court that four Internet Protocol (IP) addresses were used in the commission of the offence and during investigation it was revealed that these IP addresses belonged to Lahore, Punjab, in Pakistan.

The CBI contended that Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) was the concerned Internet Service Provider (ISP) for the four IP addresses.

“It was clear that the unauthorized access for the defacement of the BPRD website was done by some persons using the broadband internet services of PTCL…This company was found dealing with multimedia and telecommunications services in Pakistan,” Sharma told the court.

The CBI has sought from Pakistan the user details for these four IP addresses at some specific time and has also asked for a probe to know about the associates of the group “VERGIL”.

The CBI told the court that the home ministry also accorded approval to send the “letter of request” to Pakistan.

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