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Cybercrime

Cybercrime

Cybercrime

Crime is a word we are all familiar to. Defining crime is a little bit harder, so let’s say that breaking a law that has been put in place in a Government’s constitution or the Law could be considered a crime.

Cybercrime is a relatively new area of crime that has emerged from the use of the Internet and is growing rapidly in Ireland. The Internet became available to users in the late 80’s and early 90’s.

On the 6th of August 1991 the World Wide Web created by Tim Berners Lee became publicly available and by 1995 it was fully commercialized in the U.S.

Criminal activity on the Internet is growing for many reasons. It is easy, criminals enjoy anonymity and the speed of the World Wide Web makes it easy to close deals and commit crimes.

It also provides the cybercriminal the opportunity to do crime World Wide. Law enforcers according to INTERPOL, generally makes a distinction between two main types of Internet-related crimes; they are Advanced cybercrime and Cyber-enabled crime.

Advanced cybercrime concerns crimes where hardware and software are targeted and Cyber-enabled crime are traditional crimes such as against children, financial crimes and terrorism.

Crimes like illegal gambling, the selling of drugs and illegal medicines, theft, fraud, illegal gambling, childpornography and prositution, are organized by criminal organizations and small groups of people.

These groups of people make their money fast and will move on very quickly to the next idea, always thinking of new ways to outsmart the law, which makes policing very difficult.

INTERPOL is a body that works in a close relationship with the private and public industry to fight cybercrime with the latest innovation and research, digital forensics, cyber intelligence and analysis, and new policing tools.

If a criminal is caught by the Garda Siochana or INTERPOL arrests are made and criminals are tried in the same way any other criminal would be. In Ireland the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation (GBFI) works closely with the public and private sectors in order to tighten cybercrime activity and organizations like IRISSCERT specifically focusses on Cybercrimes that are related to business.

In 2015 25,000 cybercrime incidents were reported to IRISSCERT, but not all of them were reported to An Garda Síochána, therefore it becomes more imperative to protect your computer against Cybercrime.

An FBI agent in their Cyber Division compares protecting your computer to learning how to drive your car for the first time and says: “Don’t drive in bad neighbourhoods. If you don’t lock your car, it’s vulnerable; if you don’t secure your computer, it’s vulnerable. Reduce your vulnerability, and you reduce the threat.”

The FBI on their official site also gives the following advice concerning protecting your computer: keep your firewall turned on; install or update your antivirus software; install or update your antispyware technology; keep your operating system up to date; be careful what you download; and turn off your computer when not in use.

The Tanaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality Francis Fitzgerald TD is in Bratislava today to attend a two-day meeting of EU Justice and Home Affairs Ministers at the beginning of the Slovak Presidency of the Council of the European Union. The meeting will also discuss a number of Justice focussed items including Cybercrime and Encryption of data.

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