Reading the preamble of the primary law governing cyber laws in India, one realizes that one of the primary objectives of the act is to regulate E-commerce and related industries. Thus, this chapter reflects on the evolution of Electronic Data Interchange and its transition into an internet-enabled billion-dollar E-commerce Industry. The role of the United Nations Commissions on International Trade Law in the enactment of the IT Act, 2000 is highlighted, following which the various models of E-commerce are elucidated.

The chapter then enunciates what Electronic Data Interchange is and how it works, along with the evolution which led to the standardization of the same. Further, the chapter discusses digital and electronic signatures as well as the enforceability of a contract on the basis of the same. The technical concept of Cryptography and its types behind the same is also explained in detail.

Following this, the legal aspect behind digital signatures, their transition to electronic signatures, the distinction between the two, and the process of creation and verification of the same are also laid down. The chapter also dictates the liabilities of an intermediary in e-commerce as laid down by the law, with reference to relevant case laws and the effect of the amendment made to the act in 2008 on the same is also discussed.

Lastly, the chapter discusses Electronic contracts, its essentials, types, enforceability and relevant provisions of the IT Act, 2000.

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