Rakesh Maheshwari is a former Government Officer having worked for more than 35 years in Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) and retired on VRS as Sr. Director and Group Co-ordinator, Cyber Law and data Governance.
During his tenure in the Ministry, he handled activities related to Information Technology (IT) Act, Personal Data Protection Bill, Social media regulation, Cyber Security policies, Aadhaar Act in various capacities including as Group Co-ordinator (GC) Cyber Law, GC Cyber Security, GC for CERT-In, GC for UIDAI. He has been the “Designated Officer”, for more the 4.5 years, as mandated under law, for blocking under section 69A of IT Act. With MeitY being the custodian of IT Act, he has been instrumental in development of the IT (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rule, 2021 and its amendments in October 2022 and April, 2023 bringing in a variety of Intermediary regulations, Social media regulations, Online gaming regulations and also setting up of an Online grievance Appellate Committee (gac.gov.in). Involved in MeitY’s efforts on work related to Amendment of IT Act/ proposed new Digital India Act. Have participated in multiple meetings convened by various Parliamentary Standing Committees over the years. He has worked for online Safety particularly for Women and Children safety and has been instrumental for the launch of National Cyber Crime portal; MoU with NCMEC, USA and co-ordination with MHA/CBI etc.
He has handled > 400 court cases at all levels representing Govt interests including about 50 cases in Supreme Court and 300 cases in various High Courts across India. These include various online illegalities in Cyber Space, Data Privacy issues, Right to be forgotten, Social media regulation, online gaming and gambling, curbing pornograpghy, Child Sexual Abuse material etc. In addition he has also dealt with very large number of cases of violations of Copyrights, Trademarks and online Piracy and domain name disputes.
He has also been involved in Activities relating to India’s Digital Personal Data Protection Act right from inception including working with Justice Sri Krishna led Expert Committee; various JPC discussions after the bill after bill was presented in the parliament in 2019; last DPDP Bill which finally culminated in the DPDP Act, 2023. He is involved in working with BIS on development of standards in the area of Security and Privacy related matters.
As a long career of 28 years in STQC directorate, MeitY, he carried out various activities in related to Software Process Improvement (SW-CMM Trainer), quality Management (Certfied Quality Engineer and trainer), Information Security management (ISMS Lead Auditor for ISO 27001 and trainer), IT and IT enabled Service management (ISO 20000) and Process improvement relate activities. He has more than 1000 mandays of training and auditing experience.
He has been a Guest faculty/ panel Speaker in LBSNA Mussorie, SVPNPA, Hyderabad, Delhi Judicial Academy, Indian law Institute(ILI), UNODC, Indian Institute of Public Administration (IIPA), and other Institutions and conferences.
Post retirement, he has been working on the advisory Board of NIXI, India, India Future Foundation, Cyber Peace Foundation and also on and many Project review Committees of MeitY and other Govt organizations.