All websites associated with Punjab Police are inaccessible as the department failed to renew the secure sockets layer (SSL) certificates in time.
The official website of Punjab Police is not accessible since August 2, while the websites of all district police offices are non-functional since Saturday.
Non-functional websites are proving to be a major setback for the Punjab police department, which is promoting digitisation and introducing numerous online services to cater to the needs of residents.
People are dependent on official websites for passport verification, police-clearing certificates, no-objection certificates, paying fine against traffic challans and updates regarding other police services.
Apart from Punjab Police website, district police websites, cybercrime portal of Punjab Police is also not functioning. The cybercrime portal was launched by the police on April 25, 2002 and residents were asked to file their cybercrime related complaints online through the portal.
The expired SSL certificates not only highlight security issues, but also raise questions on the reliability of the Punjab police department’s digital infrastructure. Concerns have been raised about potential breach of sensitive information and the delays it could cause in legal proceedings and investigations.
Varun Goyal, a local, said in this technologically-advancing era, it is imperative for government departments to prioritise maintenance and security of their digital platforms. The Punjab police department must take this recent setback as an opportunity to enhance efficiency and accessibility of their online presence, ensuring the provision of seamless services to the citizens of Punjab.
Headquarters deputy commissioner of police (DCP) Rupinder Singh said he was not aware about the issue. He said he will look into the matter and make sure that the websites are made functional soon.
Technical services additional director general of police (ADGP) Ram Singh said there must be some technical error and he will get it checked.
Secure sockets layer (SSL) certificate is a digital certificate that authenticates a website’s identity and enables an encrypted connection.
It is a security protocol that creates an encrypted link between a web server and a web browser.
The companies and organisations need to add SSL certificates to their websites to secure online transactions and keep visitors’ information private and secure.
An IT expert, Suyash Gupta, said SSL keeps Internet connections secure and prevents criminals from reading or modifying information transferred between two systems.