What are cybercrimes?

If you are a typical Missouri resident, you probably spend a lot of time on your computer, your laptop, your tablet and especially your cellphone. You may “be addicted” to sending and receiving constant text messages to your family and friends. You may do virtually all of your banking online. You probably do most of your shopping online. Your children may submit many of their homework assignments online.

The technological revolution of the past 30 years changed how Missourians and the rest of the world conduct not only business, but also our daily lives. The downside of all this new technology, however, is that it also gave criminals and those wishing to harm others an abundance of new ways to carry out their intentions.

Types of cybercrimes

As FindLaw explains, a cybercrime is any offense committed through the use of the internet and/or additional types of computer technology. Given the ever-accelerating pace of technological change and the seemingly endless ways in which criminals can use it to their advantage, it is impossible to construct a comprehensive list of the various types of cybercrimes to which unsuspecting victims are subject. However, some of the most common include the following:

  • Cyberbullying
  • Identity theft
  • Sexting
  • Phishing
  • Work-at-home and other online scams such as catfishing
  • Online sale of fake; i.e., counterfeit consumer goods and pharmaceuticals

Whether you are the victim of a cybercrime or someone falsely accused of committing one, federal, state, county and local laws are in a state of flux as governments scramble to identify and thwart illegal internet and other computer- or phone-related activities. Your best strategy is to consult a knowledgeable cybercrime attorney to determine exactly what your jurisdiction’s laws prohibit and the penalties associated therewith. This is general information only and is not intended to provide legal advice.