Computer Crimes in the Digital Age

What are Computer Crimes?

What is interesting about computer crimes and identity theft is that what is legal or not is still being decided. The Internet is relatively new in many ways, and every day the number of computer users who surf the Web is growing. While the court system still has a fascination with paper, practically every other industry is becoming paperless. With increased internet users there is the potential for more computer crimes.

Computer Crimes Defined

“Computer crimes” is a term that refers to crime involving the use of computers in some way, and computer crimes extend beyond your desktop computer because practically everything has a computer. Modern automobiles have sophisticated computers, elevators in skyscraper buildings are equipped with them, and cash registers are all computerized.

The Internet is available globally, and the effects of computer crimes can be far reaching. The Internet extends beyond your web browser because it is much larger than that. Whenever you use a credit card at a retail store, the transaction is encrypted and it is transferred over the Internet.

Although encryption is tough to break, it is possible for a criminal to hack into this transaction and charge another person’s bank account for their purchases. The good thing is that banks pay top dollar to the computer industry’s top professionals to combat identity theft and the potential for computer crimes.

An Unwitting Victim?

In some cases, victims might not even be aware they’ve been victimized by computer crimes. The reason is that good crooks know how to get away with it. They could get away with it because they are clever enough not to leave any digital evidence in the process.

Stay Safe

Here is a small checklist to prevent a computer crimes and identity theft.

First, keep a good eye on the balance on your checking accounts. Just checking your balance once a month on your paper statement is not sufficient. Since paper checks have become paperless with the introduction of Check 21, a cyber crook could hit your checking account.

Second, keep track of your balances on credit cards. If there is anything mysterious, you should call your credit card company. Most likely it will be a merchant simply changing their name, but it is better to be safe than sorry.

Third, pay cash at restaurants. This does not imply that servers in restaurants are crooks, but it is easy to capture this information and perform computer crimes.

By following the above advice, becoming the victim of identity theft and computer crimes can be significantly reduced.

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