V. Criminal Justice Response to Cybercrime
The criminal justice system response to cybercrime is the advent and development of the field of digital forensics, which has its roots in data recovery methods. That is, digital forensics has evolved into a field of complex, controlled procedures that allow for near real-time analysis leading to accurate feedback. Such analysis allows individuals in criminal justice to track the changes and key issues that are pertinent to good investigation of cybercrime.
Another method that criminal justice uses to combat cybercrime is through education of the public. This includes publishing important tips for reducing victimization. For instance, the National White Collar Crime Center’s (NW3C) 2007 report suggested several ways that various forms of cybercrime may be reduced. For example, cyberstalking may be reduced by following these steps:
- Use a gender-neutral user name and email address.
- Use a free email account for newsgroups/mailing lists, chat rooms, instant messages (IMs), emails from strangers, message boards, filling out forms, and other online activities.
- Don’t give your primary email address to anyone you do not know or trust.
- Instruct children to never give out their real name, age, address, or phone number over the Internet without your permission.
- Don’t provide your credit card number or other information to access or subscribe to a Web site with which you are not familiar.
- Monitor/observe newsgroups, mailing lists, and chat rooms before “speaking” or posting messages.
- When you do participate online, be careful—type only what you would say to someone’s face.
- When communicating online, don’t reveal personal things about yourself until you really and truly know the other person.
- The first instinct when someone attacks you online may be to defend yourself—Don’t. This is how most online harassment situations begin.
- If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
The National White Collar Crime Center’s (2007) report indicates some tips to reduce instances of identity theft:
- Check your credit reports once a year from all three of the credit reporting agencies.
- Guard your social security number. When possible, don’t carry your social security card with you.
- Don’t put your social security number or driver’s license number on your checks.
- Guard your personal information. You should never give your social security number to anyone unless you can verify that the person is required to collect it.
- Carefully destroy papers you discard, especially those with sensitive or identifying information such as bank account and credit card statements.
- Be suspicious of telephone solicitors. Never provide information unless you have initiated the call.
- Delete any suspicious email requests without replying.
Remember, if your bank or credit card company needs you to contact it, there are telephone numbers and Web site information on your statement. You do not have to click on unsolicited emails to contact the company.
Here are some steps to take if victimized:
- Contact the fraud departments of each of the three major credit bureaus and report that your identity has been stolen.
- Get a “fraud alert” placed in your file so that no new credit will be granted without your approval.
- Contact the security departments of the appropriate creditors or financial institutions for any accounts that may have been fraudulently accessed. Close these accounts. Create new passwords on any new accounts that you open.
- File a report with your local police or the police where the identity theft took place.
- Retain a copy of the police report because it may be needed by the bank, credit card company, or other businesses as evidence that your identity was stolen. (NW3C, 2007)
- 18 U.S.C. § 1028A.
- As enumerated in section 2332b(g)(5)(B).
- The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act focuses on debt collectors’ practices.
- 15 U.S.C. § 1681 to 1681u.
- 15 U.S.C. 1666i.
- 15 U.S.C. 41, 1693.
- Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Hawaii, Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. Other states have statutes that will go online in the next 2 years (Krebs, 2007).
- In part the statute reads, “A person or agency that maintains or stores, but does not own or license data that includes personal information about a resident of the commonwealth, shall provide notice, as soon as practicable and without unreasonable delay, when such person or agency (1) knows or has reason to know of a breach of security or (2) when the person or agency knows or has reason to know that the personal information of such resident was acquired or used by an unauthorized person or used for an unauthorized purpose, to the owner or licensor in accordance with this chapter” (Chapter 93H).
- Allison, S. F. H., Schuck, A. M., & Lersch, K. M. (2005). Exploring the crime of identity theft: Prevalence, clearance rates, and victim/offender characteristics. Journal of Criminal Justice, 33(1), 19–29.
- Bellah, J. (2001). Training: Identity theft. Law & Order, 49(10), 222–226.
- Business Software Alliance. (2007). Fifth annual piracy study. Retrieved August 21, 2013, from http://globalstudy.bsa.org/2007/studies/2007_global_piracy_study.pdf
- Buzzell, T. (2005). Demographic characteristics of persons using pornography in three technological contexts. Sexuality & Culture: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly, 9, 28–48.
- Federal Trade Commission. (2006). National and state trends in fraud & identity theft: January–December 2005. Retrieved August 21, 2013, http://www.ftc.gov/sentinel/reports/sentinel-annual-reports/sentinel-cy2005.pdf
- Finkelhor, D., Mitchell, K. J., & Wolak, J. (2000). Online victimization: A report on the nation’s youth. Alexandria, VA: National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. (No. 6–00–020)
- Gopal, R. D., Sanders, G. L., Bhattacharjee, S., Agrawal, M., & Wagner, S. (2004). A behavioral model of digital music piracy. Journal of Organizational Computing and Electronic Commerce, 14, 89–105.
- Higgins, G. E., Fell, B. D., & Wilson, A. L. (2006). Digital piracy: Assessing the contributions of an integrated self-control theory and social learning theory. Criminal Justice Studies, 19, 3–22.
- Higgins, G. E., Hughes, T., Ricketts, M. L., & Fell, B. D. (2005). Student perception and understanding identity theft: We’re just dancing in the dark. Law Enforcement Executive Forum, 5(5), 163–178.
- Hinduja, S. (2003). Trends and patterns among online software pirates. Ethics and Information Technology, 5, 49–61.
- Hoar, S. (2001). Identity theft: The crime of the new millennium. USA Bulletin 49.
- Identity Theft. (2004, December 15). Confusion between fraud, identity theft frustrates industry. LRP Publications, 8, 12.
- International Federation of Phonographic Industries (IFPI). (2006). The recording industry 2006 piracy report: Protecting creativity in music. Retrieved August 21, 2013, from http://www.ifpi.org/content/library/piracy-report2006.pdf
- Koen, C. M., & Im, J. H. (1997). Software piracy and its legal implications. Security Journal, 31, 265–272.
- Krebs, B. (2007). TransUnion to offer credit freeze in all U.S. states. Washingtonpost.com. Retrieved August 21, 2013, from http://blog.washingtonpost.com/securityfix/2007/09/transunion_to_offers_credit_fr.html
- Motion Picture Association of America. (2004). U.S. piracy fact sheet.
- Motion Picture Association of America. (2005). U.S. piracy fact sheet.
- Schneier, B. (2006). The anti-ID-theft bill that isn’t. Wired.com. Retrieved April 17, 2015, from http://archive.wired.com/politics/security/commentary/securitymatters/2006/04/70690?currentPage=all
- Stack, S., Wasserman, I., & Kern, R. (2004). Adult social bonds and use of Internet pornography. Social Science Quarterly, 85, 75–88.
- Wall, D. S. (2005). The Internet as a conduit for criminal activity. In A. Pattavina (Ed.), Information Technology and the Criminal Justice System (pp. 78–94). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
- Weingart, J. (2003). Identity theft (Northeast ed.). Mountainside, NJ: Metropolitan Corporate Counsel.
- Ybarra, M. L., & Mitchell, K. J. (2005). Exposure to Internet pornography among children and adolescents: A national survey. Cyberpsychology & Behavior, 8, 473–486.