Internet/Computer Crime term paper 12423

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Like a little white lie that is the of cause another little harmless fib, a harmless fib that becomes a fabricated story, and so on. The same domino effect can be found in the act of committing a crime. Computer Crime is defined as any crime that is committed by means of the special knowledge or expert use of computer technology. Criminal activity directly related to the use of computers, specifically illegal trespass into the computer system or database of another, manipulation or theft of stored or on-line data, or sabotage of equipment and data (The American Heritage 1). Since the first reported case of computer abuse in 1958, computers have been involved in most types of crimes, including theft, burglary, larceny, fraud, embezzlement, extortion, sabotage, espionage, kidnapping, and murder (Britannica.com 1).

Computer systems themselves can be the targets of attack, as when a computer virus is introduced into a system destroy data. Computer crime is an increasing problem in The United States and all over the world. The public has become so dependant on computers, as a result we can see how our nation, along with others, went into a frenzy when the "Y2K Bug" became a potential threat. Due to the introduction of modems in the 1960's (Britannica.com 1) breaking into private computer systems is now even more easily accomplished. "We simply don't know [how big the problem is]. We do know that computer crime costs industry and society billions of dollars every year" (qtd. Deputy Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr. 2).

Someone who uses their expertise to break and tamper with computer systems as a hobby are referred to as "Hackers".

But other than the motive being a hobby, some use their abilities for personal gain. "This category includes those crimes that we in law enforcement have been fighting in the physical world but now we are seeing with increasing frequency on the Internet. These crimes includes child pornography, fraud, intellectual property violations, and the sale of illegal substances and goods online" (qtd. James K. Robinson 3). Banking and financial-service industries, where money, credit, and other finances are recorded in electronic databases and are transmitted as signals over telephone lines (Compton's 3), persons with access to such systems may control these records for their own purposes by, illegally transferring money balances to their own accounts. Tracking a criminal down is just the matter of tracing which Internet service provider they were using. For example, when a E-mail is sent requesting information, representing themselves as a bank, it is simple to trace the origin, unless there are international cooperation issues.

This is when other crimes are added onto the present crime of Computer Crime. Because of increasing anonymity possible on the Internet criminals know how to conceal their tracks in cyberspace" (qtd. Deputy Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr. 4).

Forgery, the act of of creating of a false written document, or alteration of a genuine one, with the intent to defraud (American Law p 68), is easily accomplished because of the advantage getting past a dispassionate machine.

The Internet has caused a boom in piracy. The great spread of mp3's and programs that have become shareware, which when were created were intended for pure profit. Piracy is defined as the unauthorized use or reproduction of copyrighted or patented material (American Heritage 1). The U.S. International Trade Commission stated that piracy and product counterfeiting costs the U.S. economy between $43-61 billion each year (2).

Other than through the Internet, forgery has been committed since the Renaissance period, from fakes in art, to printing up phony concert tickets (encarta.msn.com/find/ Concise.asp?z=1&pg=2&ti=761563875). Since the act of collecting art has come into vogue (unknown electric library source p2), attempts at forging artwork, or selling a copy off as an original has become more frequent.

Technology has aided in the detection of preventing and finding pieces of forgery. A photo with a color camera has been prohibited, in attempts to restrain any chance of reproduction (Suzanne Han). When the money is reproduced, unauthorized, it is considered to be counterfeit.

Forgery is a felony (American Law 68). But depending on the severity punishments are varied. Computer crime also, is treated as a felony, but there have been incidents where the act was so benign there has been sentences of 6 months and less. Computer crime is so new even though the laws and regulation are slowly being created in The Untied States of America, because of other countries, being behind in technology, or choosing to be ignorant, it is very difficult to control the World Wide Web. Counterfeiting has also been a major problem, but huge steps are being taken to try and prevent it. New currency has been created my the government in attempt to lessen the forgery of currency. We will only be able to see what strategies work if we wait.

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