22nd Nov 2016

A criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale can explain that cyber crimes include any unlawful acts that relate to the use or misuse of computers, networks and computer systems.  Due to the potential consequences that a person may receive if convicted of a cyber crime, many defendants choose to contact a criminal defense attorney in Fort Lauderdale for assistance.

There are a variety of different cyber crimes.  Simply accessing another person’s computer or email account can result in charges.  Widespread computer abuse such as wanting to bring down a large network is also considered a cyber crime.  It is illegal to intentionally introduce a computer virus to someone else.  Other forms of cyber crimes involve the misappropriation of trade secrets, theft of confidential information or theft of intellectual property.  Intentional attempts to alter, modify or destroy information in a computer, network or computer system are strictly prohibited.

Computer crimes can be difficult for prosecutors to prove.  Many hackers use sophisticated techniques to hide their true identity and to avoid detection of their physical location.  Additionally, the prosecutor must usually show that a defendant willfully and knowingly participated in the crime in question rather than accidentally did something to harm a computer.

However, when prosecutors are successful in securing a conviction for these types of crimes, the consequences are often severe.  Most computer crimes are considered a third degree felony in Florida.  This type of crime can result in a maximum term of imprisonment of five years and a fine in the amount of $5,000.  However, if the offense is more serious or is targeted at the government, the crime may be considered a second degree felony with a maximum term of imprisonment of 15 years and a $10,000 fine.

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