Cyber Crime

Description: This two-credit seminar will explore the legal issues affected and created by online crime.

The course is taught from the perspective of a practicing attorney who deals with these issues on a daily basis. The course will examine the evolution of criminal law relative to the development of new technology - primarily as it relates to online crime. In doing so, it will examine four primary areas: (1) technology relevant to online crime; (2) conduct criminalized in cyberspace, (3) privacy laws governing law enforcement investigations in cyberspace, and (3) the implications of cyber crime upon traditional notions of sovereignty. Topics will include the evolution, nature and scope of cyber crime; forensic analysis of digital evidence; online investigative techniques; federal statutes proscribing on-line crime; federal sentencing guidelines applicable to online crime; the Fourth Amendment in cyberspace; the law of electronic surveillance; the impact of online crime upon notions of sovereignty; and on-line crime trends, including identity theft, Internet fraud, and new technologies affecting on-line crime.

Given the rapid changes in technology, and the corresponding changes in the means by which online crime is committed, investigated, and prosecuted, the seminar will regularly include discussions of current events. There are no prerequisites, and there will be a final examination. In an attempt to reduce the stress surrounding the final examination, however, 40% of the grade will be determined by in-class participation prior to the final examination. Of this 40%, 10% will be determined by class attendance and weekly participation. The remaining 30% will be determined by the preparation and delivery of a small group class presentation on one of eleven topics, as further explained during the first class session.

Grades: As referenced above, ten percent (10%) of each student’s grade will be based upon class attendance and participation; thirty percent (30%) of each student’s grade will be based upon a team analysis of legal issues; and sixty percent (60%) of each student’s grade will be based upon a final exam. This means that up to 10% can be gained toward the final grade by showing up and constructively participating in class. An additional 30% can be gained toward the final grade through constructive participation in the preparation and presentation of a team project. The final exam will involve issue identification involving federal crimes, and search and seizure of electronic evidence.