Cyberbullying Laws in India

Due to rising cyberbullying, we all need to learn about Cyberbullying Laws. But what are cyberbullying laws, and how could they help us? Well, they are practices performed by law enforcement to protect the innocent from online bullies.

Cyberbullying has become one of the biggest and fastest-growing cybercrime online due to easy internet access. Now, the mentioned laws protect people from becoming victims of cyberbullying. In such cases, the victim could go to the extreme extent for relief, however, it could be dangerous.

Let’s unfold the truth behind cyberbullying and the solutions one can follow to protect themselves from being trapped by cyberbullies!

What is Cyberbullying?

It’s a form of online harassment/ bullying via online platforms. Moreover, it includes smart devices on the internet to share hurtful, threatening/ demeaning messages, photos, or something offending to people, causing stress, emotional imbalance, and harm.

Some examples of cyberbullying are as follows-

  1. Harassment

Online activity that is persistent, unwanted, and intended to intimidate, degrade, or hurt a person is referred to as harassment. It can involve using digital tools to dismay and torture the target by sending threatening messages, rude comments, or disseminating false and damaging information.

  1. Cyberstalking

Cyberstalking is the unwelcome and persistent online attention or monitoring that is directed at a specific person. It entails utilizing electronic communication to annoy, frighten, or intimidate the victim, inflicting fear, distress, and a violation of their privacy.

Cyberbullying Laws in India

India has several laws & regulations for recognizing cyberbullying and online abuse. The mentioned laws fall under the Information Technology Act, 2000, and its corrections with the related IPC sections. Moreover, it’s essential to note that the laws can change over time. There may have been improvements in cyberbullying laws in India.

In addition to Section 67 of the IT Act, the following are the provisions of cyberbullying laws in India:

  • Section 66A

Sending offensive messages through communication services: The penalty for sending obscene or threatening messages via communication services was covered in this section. However, the Supreme Court of India invalidated it in 2015 after determining that it was overbroad and ambiguous, potentially limiting free speech.

  • Section 67

Publishing or transmitting obscene material: Online publication or transmission of pornographic material is the subject of this section. This clause’s violation could result in jail time and/or a fine.

  • Section 67A

Publishing or transmitting sexually explicit material: The posting or distribution of pornographic content online is covered in this section. It includes sexually graphic material that could be used to harass or intimidate people.

Additionally, sections from the Indian Penal Code (IPC) can also be invoked:

  • Section 499

(Defamation): Defamation is defined by law as making false remarks about a person, whether orally or in writing, intending to damage their reputation or knowing that such words will do so.

  • Section 506

(Criminal Intimidation): A legal definition of defamation is that it occurs when someone makes false claims about another person, either verbally or in writing, with the intent to damage their reputation or with the knowledge that such words will do so.

Understanding the Risks

It entails being aware of the risks and effects of online harassment, which can include, among other things, emotional discomfort, mental health problems, social isolation, and reputational injury. Individuals must be aware of this in order to defend others and themselves from cyberbullying.

Emotional and Psychological Trauma

It includes the significant emotional discomfort, anxiety, and long-lasting mental scars that victims endure due to persistent online teasing, humiliation, or threats. On a person’s mental health, it may have significant and enduring negative impacts.

Reputation Damage

It describes the damage inaccurate, offensive, or libelous internet content causes to a person’s reputation, credibility, or public image. Cyberbullying has the potential to harm a person’s reputation and may have an impact on both their personal and professional lives.

Data Privacy Concerns

It entails the unauthorized gathering, distribution, or disclosure of a person’s private information during instances of online harassment. These worries include potentially exploiting private information, such as contact information, pictures, or sensitive information, to promote and escalate cyberbullying and jeopardize the victim’s security and privacy.

Cyberbullying Case Laws in India

Following are some of the popular cyberbullying case laws in India known to everybody.

  1. Shreya Singhal v. Union of India (2015): Although this landmark decision was not particularly about cyberbullying, it did result in the repeal of Section 66A of the Information Technology Act, which was frequently used to restrict free speech online. The provision was declared unlawful by the Supreme Court because it went against the freedom of speech and expression.
  2. Rini Johar v. State of MP (2018): In this instance, the victim of online harassment and character assassination was ordered by the Madhya Pradesh High Court to receive compensation from the cyberbully. The ruling emphasized the need to secure people from abuse and defamation online.
  3. Neha Rastogi v. State of Delhi (2019): The Delhi High Court upheld the man’s conviction in this case after he was discovered guilty of cyberbullying and harassing his wife both online and off. The court stressed the need to shield people involved in marital disputes from internet abuse and harassment.
  4. Nikita Singh v. State of MP (2018): The conviction of a man who made a false Facebook profile in the victim’s name and uploaded defamatory material was maintained by the Madhya Pradesh High Court. The seriousness of internet abuse and defamation was acknowledged by the court.
  5. Arjun Pandit Rao Khotkar v. Khotkar Sujata Sanjay (2019): The Bombay High Court fined those involved in this case for posting defamatory comments online and ordered the removal of that content from social media platforms.

Effects on Human Health of Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying has a lot of effects on human life and health due to various factors. Some of the effects on human health due to cyberbullying are as follows.

  1. Humiliation

Human health can be harmed by humiliation brought on by cyberbullying, including emotional discomfort, social isolation, and even physical health difficulties, including melancholy and anxiety.

  1. Anger

Human health can be negatively impacted by cyberbullying, which can cause rage, emotional distress, and potential mental health problems such as increased stress, anxiety, and aggression.

  1. Suicidal thoughts and self-harm

Cyberbullying can cause intense mental discomfort and pain, which can result in self-destructive actions and a wish to end the suffering. These impacts on human health include the possibility of suicide ideation and self-harm.

  1. Solitude

In order to prevent further hurt or mental anguish, victims of cyberbullying may withdraw from social connections, both online and offline, which can result in feelings of loneliness and social disengagement.

Proactive Measures Against Cyberbullying

Now that you know how much cyberbullying can disturb one’s daily life, you should know how to protect yourself against cyberbullying. Following are some of the steps that you can follow to protect yourself from cyberbullying.

  1. Digital Literacy

Because it enables people to safely navigate the online world, see indicators of cyberbullying, and take the necessary precautions to safeguard themselves and others from online harassment and abuse, digital literacy is a proactive approach against cyberbullying.

  1. Strong Passwords

In order to prevent cyberbullying, you should create strong passwords for your online accounts and personal information. By doing this, you will lessen the possibility that cyberbullies may obtain access to your accounts and use them to harass or target you.


  1. Two-Factor Authentication

Because it increases the security of your online accounts, 2FA is a preventative tool against cyberbullying. It helps to minimize the possibility of cyberbullies getting illegal access to your account and harassing or targeting you online, even if they manage to get their hands on your password.

  1. Educate Youngsters

Children’s education is a preventative step against cyberbullying because it gives them the knowledge and abilities to identify, report, and deal with online harassment, giving them the ability to safeguard others and themselves against cyberbullying and its negative repercussions.

  1. Legal Recourse

Legal action against cyberbullies to hold them accountable for their deeds and discourage others from engaging in similar behavior, aiding in the creation of a safer online environment, constitutes legal remedies, which is a preventative strategy against cyberbullying.


Ultimately, you should know that with the increasing crime, we should upgrade ourselves too. For that, we must know about cyberbullying by approaching various sources. One of the best sources is to contact an institute that can offer you enough information and knowledge on cybersecurity to improve your skills and knowledge in the field of the IT Sector.

Now, for you, one of the best sources of information is Bytecode Security, which has been offering cybersecurity courses in Delhi and online with the support of professional cybersecurity experts working for years in the IT sectors dealing with real-life cybersecurity incidents. What are you waiting for? Contact Now!

Frequently Asked Questions

Cyberbullying Laws in India

  1. What are the laws for cyber abuse in India?

Here are some key provisions related to cyber abuse under the IT Act:

  • Section 66A – Sending offensive messages through communication services
  • Section 67 – Publishing or transmitting obscene material
  • Section 67A – Publishing or transmitting sexually explicit material
  • Section 67B – Publishing or transmitting sexually explicit content of a minor
  • Section 66E – Violation of privacy
  • Section 66F – Cyberterrorism
  • Section 43A – Compensation for failure to protect data
  1. What are the anti-bullying laws in India?

Here are some key legal provisions and initiatives related to bullying in India:

  1. Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses (POCSO) Act,
  2. Information Technology Act, 2000,
  3. Education Policies,
  4. State-Specific Laws,
  5. Police Complaints, and
  6. Legal Precedents.
  7. What is the IPC for online abuse?

Here are some relevant IPC sections that can be used to address online abuse:

  1. Defamation (IPC Section 499 and 500),
  2. Criminal Intimidation (IPC Section 506),
  3. Obscene and Offensive Content (IPC Section 292 and 294),
  4. Stalking (IPC Section 354D),
  5. Sending Offensive or Annoying Messages (IPC Section 66A – Repealed),
  6. Privacy Violation (IPC Section 66E), and
  7. Impersonation (IPC Section 416).
  8. What are the two laws against online harassment?

Here are two key laws that can be used to address online harassment:

  • Indian Penal Code (IPC): Online harassment is covered by several provisions of the Indian Penal Code, including:
  1. Defamation (IPC Section 499 and 500),
  2. Criminal Intimidation (IPC Section 506),
  3. Stalking (IPC Section 354D),
  4. Obscene & Offensive Content (IPC Section 292 and 294), and
  5. Privacy Violation (IPC Section 66E).
  • Information Technology Act, 2000: The IT Act has provisions that can be used to combat different types of cybercrimes, including harassment, even though it doesn’t address it expressly:
  1. Section 66A (Repealed),
  2. Section 66C, and
  3. Section 67.
  4. What is the IPC section for mental harassment?

Commonly applicable sections include:

  • Criminal Intimidation (IPC Section 506),
  • Stalking (IPC Section 354D),
  • Defamation (IPC Section 499 and 500),
  • Cruelty by Husband or Relatives of Husband (IPC Section 498A), and
  • Domestic Violence (Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005).
  1. What is the punishment for abusing someone on social media in India?

Here are some potential legal consequences and punishments for online abuse in India:

  • Defamation (IPC Section 499 and 500),
  • Criminal Intimidation (IPC Section 506),
  • Stalking (IPC Section 354D),
  • Obscene and Offensive Content (IPC Section 292 and 294),
  • Information Technology Act, 2000, and
  • Protection of Women from Online Harassment.
  1. Can you go to jail for verbal abuse in India?

Yes, if you are found guilty in court and your verbal abuse amounts to a criminal offense like defamation, criminal intimidation, or other types of harassment, you may be sentenced to jail in India. The offense and its seriousness, as established by the applicable legal provisions, would decide the precise length of the sentence.

  1. Is online harassment a crime in India?

When it involves illegal behaviors like defamation, criminal intimidation, stalking, or other offenses listed in the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Information Technology Act, 2000, then the answer is yes, online harassment is regarded as a crime in India. Depending on the type and seriousness of the offense, there may be a range of legal repercussions for internet harassment.

  1. Is verbal abuse legal in India?

India usually forbids verbal abuse. Depending on the individual circumstances and relevant legal laws, it may be regarded as a crime concerning acts like defamation, criminal intimidation, or other types of harassment.

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