As the use of the internet continues to grow, so do the opportunities for cyber crime. As such incidents increase, so do the government's attempts to stop them.
If you or a loved one face charges for cyber crime, it is important to understand the charges to know what you are up against. Phishing is one of the oldest forms of cyber crime and remains a prevalent one today.
In short, phishing is a type of computer crime that involves a party sending an e-mail to a recipient, claiming to be a reputable organization and seeking to gain personal information from the recipient. In many cases, the phishing e-mails appear legitimate and ask for the information in order to rectify an issue, such as asking recipients to verify their usernames and passwords by following a link.
Though people are becoming more aware of this type of fraudulent activity, the tactics of phishers are becoming more shrewd. Many are refining the e-mails to look extremely similar to legitimate messages from actual companies and websites. Some of the more successful phishing messages are set up to look like inner-office correspondences.
Over the years, phishing scams have negatively impacted people across the world. Due to its fraudulent nature, it is a federal offense. It is also important to note that each report of e-mail distribution counts as a separate offense, even if it is the same e-mail message. Such offenses can add up and result in heavy fines and even jail time. However, in order for the charge to stand, the prosecution must show that the party distributed the e-mail with intent to trick the recipient.
If you are facing phishing charges, it is critical to secure proper legal assistance. It may also be beneficial to review the law in full to gain a true knowledge of what you are up against.