18 November 2014

‘High risk’ cyber-crime is really a mixed bag of threats

Lumping in alleged terrorist activity and major fraud with hamfisted phishing, Russian love goddesses and Nigerian princes serves to underplay the actual threat experienced at the sharp end. A sharp end where harm to the individual, the organisation and the nation state take place and where the policing resources do not get effectively focused.

As we piece together the picture, it soon becomes clear that cyber-crimes each have distinct modus operandi, covered by distinct bodies of law. At one level we have “crimes against the machine”, crimes that attack the integrity of the computer’s access mechanisms such as hacking and cracking, cyber-vandalism, cyber-spying, DDOS(distributed denial of service) attacks and viruses. In the UK, such offences are mainly covered by the Computer Misuse Act 1990 and the key source of evidence is found in the computer’s login and operating logs.
At another level lie the “crimes that use machines”, such as fraud, but also phishing or advanced fee fraud which use networked computer systems (often legitimately) to engage victims with the intention of dishonestly acquiring cash, goods or services. These crimes are covered by the Fraud Act 2006 and related legislation. The evidence is to be found in computer transaction logs and those of relevant financial systems.
Finally, there are the “crimes in the machine”. These are computer-content crimes that relate to the illegal content of computer systems. They include the trade and distribution of extreme pornographic and hate crime materials or materials that intend to deprave, corrupt or incite violence. In the UK these are covered by a range of laws including the Extreme Pornography laws (sections 63 to 67 of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008) and Hate Speech Laws, Communications Act 2003 and others. The evidence for these crimes is usually located in the computer’s main storage space.

Click here to read more .... http://theconversation.com/high-risk-cyber-crime-is-really-a-mixed-bag-of-threats-34091

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