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Trends in Computer Crimes

Chicago, IL criminal defense attorney Gal Pissetzky talks about certain trends he sees in computer crimes.

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Computer crimes are just beginning to evolve. You see many, many identity theft crimes that are committed through the computer. And generally that’s how these computer crimes are being prosecuted, as identity theft. An individual goes on the computer, finds, uncovers a victim’s social security number, a victim’s credit card number, a victim’s address, and then they go on and they apply for another credit card or they go and drain the person’s bank accounts or retirement accounts. So that is the identity theft type of crimes that you see now on the computer.

Other crimes that you see through the computer are of course the child pornography crimes where an individual uses a peer-to-peer program to get and download child pornography on their computer. And unfortunately, or fortunately, they don’t realize that the law enforcement, state and federal, are spying on everybody. If you use a peer-to-peer program, such as eMule or torrent, federal or state agents have very proprietary computer programs that will flag the individuals that download child pornography and eventually you are going to get a knock on the door with a search warrant for your computer and for your home. And that is one of the crimes that is becoming very, very prosecuted now because law enforcement developed these tools to discover who is downloading child pornography. Sex trafficking is also being used in the computer.

You hear about a lot of prosecution from the website Backpage.com where they have – these are prosecutions that relate to sex. Sex with children, sex with individuals that were brought here to the United States for the purpose of committing sex acts. Sex with minors that were taken across state lines, which makes it a federal crime.

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