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Computer crime is also referred to as cybercrime. Perpetrators of these crimes, use technology to gain unauthorized access to computer systems (Franklin 2006). Over the past few years, computer-related crimes have been rising steadily. Various factors are believed to be behind the rise in cybercrimes. The following are some of the reasons behind the rise in cybercrime.
Companies, organizations, banks, and governments have been storing very confidential documents online. This has led to the rise in cybercrime rates (Reyes 2007). People will try hacking into websites by manipulating firewalls. They can then, be able to access important information concerning these organizations.
Lack of enough evidence
Police have been unable to get proper evidence on crimes committed online. Cybercriminals employ various methods to cover up their tracks. Evidence collected by the police is never enough to convict cybercriminals (Wall 2007). These criminals are, therefore, more comfortable knowing that they can never be convicted.
Some people are generally careless. It is important to protect stored data (Clough 2010). By protecting data, criminals will find it hard to access the information stored in computer systems. Some people also save passwords on their computers. These acts of negligence have dire consequences.
Easy accessibility to victims
The number of people accessing the internet has been on the rise. This has enabled these criminals to target more people without being present physically. The police will find it hard to conduct investigations and gather enough evidence to arrest these criminals (Reyes 2007).
There are several types of computer crimes. These crimes include;
Hacking can be described as the process of gaining unauthorized access to a computer system. The main aim of hacking is to gain unauthorized access to information. This is illegal in most countries. Cybercriminals usually commit these crimes by hiding their I.P addresses. Others will try to reveal passwords to gain access to those sites that are password protected.
These are software designed by malicious people to cause damage to computer systems. The user is most cases may not be aware of the presence of a virus in the computer system. They are mostly meant to destroy information on computers. These programs can crash computer systems, in the process destroying crucial data. Viruses can be spread through the internet and by the use of removable devices (Clough 2010). These include flash disks, compact disks, and USB drives.
This is a serious computer crime. Computer criminals, through the use of fake identities, steal money and gain access to crucial information. Some of the crimes committed using fake identities include terrorism, financial theft, blackmail, and identity cloning.
Governments have come up with highly qualified teams dedicated to fighting cybercrimes. Governments spend a lot of money on training personnel who work in these teams. Software engineers are some of the highly qualified personnel forming these teams and mainly deal with analyzing computer crimes (Yar 2006). Governments have also come up with various ways through which the public can report cybercrimes. Tough penalties have been introduced to help curb this menace. These steps taken by governments will help track down offenders of the crimes described above. Public awareness is also important. The government has initiated public awareness campaigns to sensitize the public on this issue.
Clough, J. (2010). Principles of cybercrime. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
Franklin, C. J. (2006). The investigator’s guide to computer crime. Springfield, Ill.: Charles C. Thomas.
Reyes, A. (2007). Cyber crime investigations bridging the gaps between security professionals, law enforcement, and prosecutors. Rockland, MA: Syngress Pub..
Wall, D. (2007). Cybercrime: the transformation of crime in the information age. Cambridge: Polity.
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Yar, M. (2006). Cybercrime and society: rime and punishment in the information age. London: SAGE Publications.