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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Essay on Cybercrime - What is Cybercrime

            If a study will be conducted today and people were to be asked on which they should be imposed a harsher and stricter penalty, a person who robs a bank or a person who commits fraud with the use of an internet.  The most common answer that will probably be elicited from a majority of the respondents is that the bank robber should be meted the harsher penalty. In fact, they may even be surprised to find out that fraud with the use of Internet is a crime. This perhaps highlights the current problem with cybercrime.

            Cybercrime is defined as a crime committed on the internet using computer either as a tool or as a targeted victim.  The Council of Europe’s Cybercrime Treaty uses the term cybercrime in relation to offenses that range from criminal activity against data to content and copyright infringement.  However, cybercrime is much more than data theft and violations of copyright.  According to the United Nations Manual on Prevention and Control of Computer Related Crime, cybercrime is more extensive and now includes activities that extend to fraud, unauthorized access, child pornography and cyberstalking.

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Basically, cybercrime is divided into the following categories: a) cybercrimes against persons, b) cybercrimes against property and c) cybercrimes against government.  A cybercrime is deemed committed against a person when it causes serious damage to a person.  For instance, online pornography is an example of cybercrime.  When a person posts and transmits pornography through the Internet and makes the same accessible to any person who uses the Internet a crime is committed.  It is a crime because it undermines and destroys the fundamental value system of today’s younger generation.  It is a crime because people may get addicted to pornography which may eventually trigger worse crimes such as rape.

A cybercrime is deemed committed against property when the Internet is used to cause damage and prejudice to certain property.  For instance, a person is able to transmit harmful viruses with the use of the computer and the Internet paralyzing the operations of a business organization.  This is a crime because other person’s or business organization’s property is destroyed.  On the other hand, a cybercrime is deemed committed against the government when the Internet is used as means to spread fear and terror against the people in a country.  This can be done by gaining control over important and sensitive government information or facilities. 

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