Cybercrime is a relatively recent phenomenon. The term defines a crime that involves a computer and a network. A person may use a computer to help commit the crime, or they can target the computer for the offense. In order to be considered a cybercrime, there must be a criminal motive to intentionally harm the reputation of the victim, or cause physical or mental harm or loss to the victim. This harm can be done directly or indirectly by using modern telecommunication networks, such as the Internet and mobile phones. More simply, it means someone has used a computer to harm another person intentionally.
Awareness of these crimes has increased recently after many reports of high-profile hacking, copyright infringement, child pornography, child grooming, and unwarranted mass surveillance. For example, many large companies have had at least one incident of being hacked resulting in a significant amount of their customers' personal information being released to the criminals. Just last month, in April 2017, customers of Home Depot had their personal data stolen in a hack after months of security warnings.
With such a vast range of applications for computers and technology in crime, judges still struggle with how to prosecute it. However, if you are caught committing a cybercrime, there are different degrees of minor and major penalties you could face, depending on the circumstances of your arrest.
The most minor punishments include fines for conviction of various misdemeanor Internet crimes. They can be as little as a few hundred dollars to as much as $1,000. Felony conviction fines can exceed $100,000. Likewise, sentences will vary from a short time in jail to a prison term of 20 years or more. Probation can also be a penalty you'll face; it typically lasts a year and requires the person to refrain from committing more crimes, maintaining a job, reporting to a probation officer, and paying all court costs and fines.
If you've been involved in cybercrime, or you're accused of a cybercrime, make sure you're represented by an excellent Florida criminal defense attorney. Musca Law has more than 150 years of collective legal experience to offer your case, and our attorneys are aggressive and tenacious representatives in court. Let us fight to maintain your good name. Contact us at (888) 484-5057 or fill out our online form to schedule your free case consultation today.