The Internet is always expanding, providing new and innovative ways to accomplish tasks. Whether you are using it for school, work or at home for personal use, the Internet’s vast abilities can keep a person entertained for a lifetime. While there is much positivity that can come from the Internet, there are some downsides. When it is not used properly or in the commission of a crime, this could result in criminal charges.

Take ransomware for example. This is a cyber crime that impacts hospitals, school districts, state and local governments, businesses of all sizes and law enforcement agencies. This occurs when there is an insidious type of malware. This malware encrypts or locks digital files that hold much value, demanding a ransom for their release.

Being unable to access important data could significantly alter the ability for these organizations to maintain regular operations. Individuals could also be impacted, having their home computers impacted by this crime. This places their personal and often irreplaceable items at risk.

A ransomware typically occurs when the victim opens and email and clicks on an attachment. This starts the malicious process that begins to infect the computer. Those accused of causing such an act could face significant penalties. In addition, he or she could face federal crimes, as they could go beyond state borders or interfere with interstate commerce.

Cyber crime allegations could stem from a wide variety of actions taken on-line. Some of these could be innocent acts while others carry with it ill intent. No matter the case, those facing Internet crime charges should understand the situation they are in, the penalties they could face, the evidence used against them and what defense options are available to them. This could help the accused assert a strong defense that could reduce the charges or even result in an acquittal.

Source: Fbi.gov, “Cyber Crime,” accessed Feb. 24, 2018