4 Maddening Reasons Why Many Cyber Criminals Go Free
If someone kicked in your business’s front door, swaggered over to your data storage and uploaded all of your private data, it’s almost certain that you’d want to press charges against them. If someone were to do the same thing, but digitally, you’d likely want to do the same to them. However, prosecuting cyber crime is much easier said than done.
Ignoring the vast numbers of cyber criminals that escape the watchful eye of the law, there are loopholes and uncertainties that allow the majority of those caught to escape justice. What follows are four major problems that law enforcement has with malicious users and other ill-intentioned online actors.
Most Crimes Go Unreported
Let’s say you were to log into your business’s accounts, only to find that they had been emptied without the knowledge of any member of your organization, clearly the act of a cyber criminal. Who would you reach out to in order to report the crime and have it investigated?
Not many people know the proper protocols to follow when dealing with cyber crime, and even when they do, it isn’t often that it amounts to much. This is because it often would cost the enforcing body much more to track down and apprehend the perpetrator, or even recover what was stolen. As a result of this lack of documentation, when a cyber criminal is eventually brought to trial, the prosecution lacks the statistics needed to serve justice.
It’s Difficult to Collect Evidence
On the topic of things the prosecution lacks, it is remarkably difficult to obtain court-admissible evidence of cyber crime. After all, the only evidence that can really be collected would all have originated from your systems. As a result, you are fair game for the defense to question at length and with extreme prejudice.
A decent defense attorney would be quick to question the validity of your provided evidence, as well as ask any other question that could absolve their client of perceived guilt. By confusing the jury with cyber-babble and what-if scenarios, a lawyer could very well make you appear to be the guilty one, with what little evidence you had available to you.
The System is Still Unsure of How to Prosecute These Crimes
Compared to the justice system as a whole, Internet-based crime is brand-new, and so the justice system has had a bit of a learning curve when it comes to handling it. Different locations are subject to different local laws, and what is illegal in one place may not be in another. Computers and other devices throw another layer of complexity on top of the existing legal system, as someone need not be present in a location to do business, thanks to the Internet. Due to this, most cyber crimes in the United States are pushed up to the federal level, where the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act applies. However, the CFAA is not the only cyber-centric law on the books, as the Federal Wire Act and CAN-SPAM Act also come into play in certain situations.
On top of this confusion, there is also the need to educate those within the system of the intricacies of cyber crime. Members of law enforcement and the legal system all need to be kept current on the latest threats and forms of cybercrime.
Finally, the Big Issue, Jurisdiction
Of all the complications of prosecuting a cyber criminal, this is the one that has caused the most trouble for the legal system. How does one go about bringing about legal repercussions against an actor in another country, as so many are located? It’s clearly difficult enough to prosecute a local cyber criminal, let alone one who is held under a different authority.
Regardless of the evidence that has been collected against an actor, many countries simply will not participate in the rules that other countries have agreed upon regarding the handling of cross-border criminals. Without the legal jurisdiction to bring in the actor, or the host country’s cooperation in arresting them, there is no platform upon which to stand.
Due to these four complications, the ability to capture, let alone convict, cyber criminals after the fact is remarkably low. The best option is, therefore, to prevent a cyber crime from being committed in the first place. Resolve I.T. can help you implement the solutions and practices to keep your data as secure as possible, potentially foiling a criminal before they even try.