Facebook is set to provide details of private chats to the Delhi Police in sensitive cases, especially those related to crimes against women and children, senior officials of the social networking website told officers working with the cyber wing during an interaction on Friday.
On Thursday evening, a message was conveyed to all cyber wing department heads from various districts as well as specialised units, stating that they have to attend a meeting with Facebook’s special team from the US as well as Facebook India (trust and safety) head Satya Yadav for an interaction.
“The meeting started at 11 am Friday in a conference hall of the Economic Offences Wing (EOW), and ended at 3.30 pm after several rounds of discussion during which officers shared their problems with Facebook officials and also requested them to provide additional details while working cases,” a senior officer said.
Currently, Facebook does not provide details of private chats to investigators. During their interaction, police personnel raised this issue with the team, and gave them examples of cases where such chats are crucial. “Police personnel told them that while probing some kidnapping for ransom cases, they need to scan chats of the victim to gather clues. On hearing their concerns, Facebook assured them that they will provide such details, but only after considering the gravity of the cases, like if it relates to women or children,” an officer who attended the meeting said.
When contacted, DCP (cyber cell) Anyesh Roy confirmed that such an interactive session had taken place. Some police personnel also raised concerns over the social networking website taking time to respond to their requests, and asked them to provide details in a shorter span of time. On this, Yadav shared his email ID along with other personal details, and asked the personnel to contact him if they want details in a time-bound manner. “Police officers requested them to also provide IP register, IP logs, mobile numbers and emails as and when required,” the officer said.
Last month, Delhi Police Commissioner Amulya Patanik, during the annual press conference, had said that cyber crime will be the focus for Delhi Police in 2019. A few days ago, the special cell’s cyber crime team was shifted to their new office in Dwarka.