Common Federal Cybercrimes

Cybercrime impacts people across state lines, and, as such, they are under federal jurisdiction. The term “cybercrime” encompasses a great number of crimes, but there are a few that are more common than others. In this article, a federal defense attorney in St. Petersburg with The Rickman Law Firm shares the four most common federal cybercrimes and how to protect yourself if you are wrongfully accused of committing one.

Related: What You Need to Know About the Rise of Coronavirus-Based Cybercrime

Ransomware

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) commonly monitors situations of ransomware in which you receive or send a spam email with an attachment. If you click on the link, you may be allowing a ransomware code to redirect you to a website that contains software designed to infect your computer and encrypt your personal information. Subsequently, online ransom messages instructing the victim of how to pay to decrypt the information, usually through Bitcoin, are also classified as ransomware.

Ransomware does not just target individuals but business enterprises as well. For example, if an employee using a VPN and shared drive opens a ransomware attachment, it can infect every folder within the network. This results in hundreds or even thousands of gigabytes of important data lost and puts businesses at major risk of losing important information to those who should not access it. In some cases, businesses choose to pay the attacker and still will not get the data back.

Computer Trespassing

Typically associated with hackers, computer trespassing is defined as accessing, altering, deleting, damaging, destroying, or disrupting any computer, computer system, computer network, computer program, or data intentionally and without authorization.

Computer trespassing is not the way it sounds in the movies. It does not need to be done in the middle of the night by masked hackers, and it doesn’t always involve a bank heist or some other dramatic scheme. Instead, it can be as simple as a disgruntled employee (or former employee) entering a company’s servers and deleting important files. It may seem like a prank or not a big deal, but it is a federal crime.

Related: What Is a Federal Cybercrime?

Phishing Scams

A phishing scam is a fraudulent attempt to obtain sensitive information or data, such as usernames, passwords, or credit card details, by impersonating a trustworthy entity in digital communication. For example, phishing is often done by email and impersonates an expired login or additional verification. After entering your information, you discover that the website was not legitimate. If you create or send a phishing scam, you may be subject to major penalties as it is a violation of federal law.

Website Spoofing

Website spoofing is a major issue during political campaigns because it often results in people giving money to scammers while thinking that they are donating to a political candidate’s campaign. But, what is website spoofing? Website spoofing is the act of creating a website with the intention of misleading visitors to think that the page or website is owned by someone else. Normally, the spoof website will adopt the design of the target website and sometimes has a similar URL.

Committing any type of cybercrime can carry serious consequences, even if you did not intend to commit the crime in question. If you stand accused of a federal cybercrime, contact the best federal defense attorney in St. Petersburg with The Rickman Law Firm as soon as possible.

For a free consultation with the best federal defense attorney in St. Petersburg, please contact The Rickman Law Firm today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.

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