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Computer and Internet Crimes Archives

Defenses re charges for computer and internet crimes

Felony convictions bring penalties, and some are more severe than others are. Using a device such as a computer or a smartphone to commit crimes can lead to enhanced penalties. For that reason, anyone in Michigan who is being investigated for computer and internet crimes is best advised to seek legal counsel immediately.

Computer and internet crimes: Is cyberbullying a crime?

In Michigan, there are penalties for every crime. However, when it comes to computer and internet crimes, there seem to be some gray areas. Cyberbullying, is typically defined as harassing or intimidating behavior on the internet, including posting threatening messages in a public forum. It is something that gives rise to concern. News headlines have reported several cases of children who committed suicide after they were the victims of such bullying.

Can you be charged under Michigan's 'revenge porn' law?

In October 2013, California became the first state to pass a “revenge porn” law, which made the publication of sexually explicit photos or videos with the intent to threaten or blackmail another person a crime. Since then, a number of states have followed suit with varying versions of a revenge porn law.

What to do about being accused of cyberbullying

There’s no question that cyber-bullying has become a national dilemma. There are countless stories of teens mounting personal attacks and creating mob-like agendas against other children. Indeed, bullying is nothing new, but the added dimension of being able to broadcast attacks has far-reaching implications. Because of how pervasive cyber-attacks can be (i.e. forcing children to change schools and sometimes leading to suicide) there are many who believe that such bullying should be considered a crime.

Computer crime statutes can be confusing

Prosecution of computer crimes is on the rise, given how so many more computers are connected via the Internet. Moreover, federal laws on computer crimes dating back to the 1980’s may not be able to deal with the type of actions and access that people have to computers today. Because of this, what may seem to be relatively benign actions may actually end up being prosecuted as crimes.

Supreme Court allows narrow definition to remain in hacking cases

The U.S. Supreme Court has turned away two cases involving the 1986 Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, which makes accessing computers without authorization into a federal crime. That leaves the existing 9th Circuit court rulings in place despite concerns that the definition of "without authorization" has been interpreted far too narrowly.

Social media warrants and the Fourth Amendment

It is no secret that law enforcement agencies now rely on social media as means of gathering information to charge individuals with crimes. But where do authorities draw the line between zealous investigations and privacy violations? Chances are that what they believe to be a “legal” search may violate an individual’s Fourth Amendment rights when it comes to searching private social media accounts.

What's the deal with Bitcoin and why is the IRS watching?

The Internal Revenue Service is coming after digital currency services and its users for information related to Bitcoin holdings. Bitcoin is a decentralized online crypto-currency. Its users are anonymous. This makes transactions tough to track, attracting the attention of government agencies like the IRS. Why? Because Bitcoin has been linked to criminal activity that law enforcement would like to stop.

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