A broad definition
Any illegal act for which knowledge of computer technology is used to commit the
offense. (US DOJ, 1989) Note that there are many narrower definitions of specific types
and varieties of computer crime under numerous statutes and case law.
Elements of computer fraud
- knowingly access or otherwise use a computer
- without authorization or exceeding authorization
- with intent to commit a fraudulent act or other criminal act
- computer fraud
- computer-assisted crime
- information crime
Computers and crime
- Computer as object computers and network systems themselves as the object or
target of crime. For example, physical theft, damage, destruction of information.
- Computer as subject the computer is the environment within which the crime is
committed. For example, virus attacks.
- Computer as tool computers used as the means to commit a crime. For example,
embezzlement, theft of information, hacking.
- Computer as symbol computers used to lend frauds credibility. For example,
elaborately computerized investment schemes.
Source: Fundamentals of Computer Fraud. (1999). Austin, TX: Association
of Certified Fraud Examiners.
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