Introduction - 

       Tampering with computer source documents refers to the act of intentionally altering or modifying the original source code of a computer program or software. This can have serious consequences and is typically considered a form of unauthorized access or hacking. This activity is typically illegal and unethical, as it can have serious consequences both legally and in terms of computer security

Legal Consequences of Tempering with Computer Source Documents

        Tampering with computer source documents is often a violation of copyright and intellectual property laws. The source code of the software is usually protected by copyright, and modifying it without authorization can lead to legal action.

        Depending on the jurisdiction and the specific circumstances, tampering with source code may also constitute computer crimes, such as hacking or unauthorized access, which can result in criminal charges.

Tampering with computer source documents (IT Act 2000)

     According to Section 65 of the Information Technology Act 2000, whoever knowingly or intentionally conceals, destroys or alters or intentionally or knowingly causes another to conceal, destroy, or alter any computer source code used for a computer, computer programme, computer system or computer network when the computer source code is required to be kept or maintained by law for the time being in force, shall be punishable with imprisonment up to three years, or with fine which may extend up to two lakh rupees, or with both.

Explanation.  For the purposes of this section, 'computer source code" means the listing of programmes, computer commands, design and layout and programme analysis of computer resources in any form. 

Punishment : 

As above mentioned whoever does such activity is punishable with imprisonment up to three years, or with fine which may extend up to two lakh rupees, or both.

Conclusion : 

   Tampering with computer source documents is a serious offense that can have legal, ethical, and security implications. It is essential for individuals and organizations to respect intellectual property rights, follow ethical coding practices, and take measures to protect their source code from unauthorized access and modification. Information Technology Act deals with such activity and provides punishment for such activity. 

See Also...

Secure Electronic Records and Secure Electronic Signature (IT Act 2000)

 What is Cybercrime? and what are Types of Cyber Crimes


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