Most people have a false sense of security when they are online. This includes people who give out their financial information without hesitancy and people who engage in criminal conduct. In either case, there are ways to get information you think you are keeping hidden.
However, if you part of the latter group, you don't just stand to lose your money and identify when someone tracks you down; you could also lose your freedom. This can and does happen when people are convicted of a cyber crime and sentenced under federal guidelines. If you are involved in any of the following activities, you need to know that you are at risk for arrest and federal charges.
- Hacking into someone else's computer
- Taking someone's personal information through fraud
- Introducing a virus into someone's computer
- Using a computer to carry out fraudulent activity
- Harassing or stalking a person online
- Taking, sending or viewing illicit sexual material on a digital device
- Engaging in unlawful transactions online
Authorities take these and other cyber crimes are taken very seriously. And because computer-related laws and offenses are relatively new in the grand scheme of things, it can be more difficult to know what to expect when it comes to how prosecutors decide to charge a person accused of these activities.
If you are accused of a cyber crime, understand that there is a lot at stake, and there is more room for flexibility when it comes to these charges and penalties. This is why it is critical that you secure the guidance of a criminal defense attorney familiar with federal charges, including computer crimes, as soon as you are under investigation or arrested. Failure to do so could leave you exposed rights violations, costly mistakes and overly harsh penalties.