Crime Essay, Research Paper
In today s society computers are everywhere, but when someone thinks of a computer they think of it as a way to make life easier. This is true computers have made our life a lot easier and some times harder. The area that computer have improved our life the most is in communication, now we can write talk and hold a video conference anywhere in the world in real time. However, with as many good things that computers bring, they also bring many bad things too. Just as there is, crime in the real world there is also crime in the computer world, most of it taken place on the Internet. Such as forgery, assault, fraud, and theft. Throughout this essay, I will talk about computer crimes and why you should not commit them.
I will warn the reads of this essay not to participate, support or commit computer crimes. In the computer world, there are many crimes, starting with hacking, cracking, and software piracy. These computer crimes don t just hurt the person being attacked but they hurt everyone for the reason they lead to higher cost software to protect against such attacks. The type of software needed to protect against these crimes are anti-virus and firewall protection. With the right anti-virus software you can scan data that you want to download of any software some gives you, this will help you avoid getting a computer virus. Firewall protection is software that helps you keep unwanted people out of your system this is really good against cracker that want to destroy your system.
Hackers are people that for the most part try to break into a system to explore the boundaries and details of the system. They are the kind of people that like to see how far they can stretch the program before it breaks. That enjoyment that hackers get from doing this is the challenge and knowledge that they gain. However, hackers do sometimes cause a system to be damaged. They aren t considered malicious terrorists, this term is reserved for crackers. But, hackers do get into system that they should not be in and this is an invasion of privacy.
Now we have crackers they are the most malicious computer terrorists out in cyberspace. These are the people who knowingly set out to disrupt or destroy computer systems. Most of the time a cracker s motivations behind such crimes are revenge and/or profit. It is common knowledge that crackers have cause major disruptions in the computer over the last few years, however when these crimes are being reported the news likes to say hackers did it. For this reason is why I have taken the time to explain the differences between hackers and crackers.
Then we have the software pirate or the crime of software piracy. This is a crime that I am sure many people have committed; I even did this before I looked at the bigger picture. Like music and art, software is protected under the copyright law. Software piracy is where someone copies software either for personal use or to sell at a lower price that the original. It really does not matter how you look at it, but software piracy is a crime. You may think that you just make one copy for yourself, but you have not paid for the right to use this software. We will talk later about how this effects us. The only time that coping software is legal, is when it is shareware or freeware, however you cannot sell this type of software. Be careful when using freeware or shareware it is any easy way to spread a computer virus.
How are computer crimes committed? There are many different methods to committing these crimes they are done by altering input, theft of computer time, theft of output, and the theft of software, which we already talked a little about. To alter the input of a computer system the criminal must have knowledge of the system, a lot of times this type of break-in is done by a disgruntled employee. Most of the time by covering their tracks, they will steal or destroy valuable data. Theft of computer time is when, an employee uses the company s computers to do personal stuff, like run a side job or play games. This is not just damaging to the company, but to the other employees that have to pick up extra work. Theft of output is when, a person steals information from someone to use it for personal benefit.
Why should you not commit computer crimes? Well first lets say it is against the law, yet it is easy to get away with it there is always a chance of you getting caught, charged with a crime, and in the case of hacking or cracking you could be charged with a felony. Another good reason not to commit computer crimes is it is damaging to all consumers. When a hacker or cracker break-in to a computer system, software developers have to update or make new software to defend against these attacks. The new software is going to cost us (the consumer) more money to update our systems. When someone creates a virus, this will cost us more money to either fix what the virus damaged or update our system to protect against the virus. We may not pay for it immediately but we will eventually have to pay for the new software to keep our systems up. Not only are hackers and crackers breaking in to computer systems and causing damage, but they are also invading your privacy. For an example, they could break into a mail server, to read and gather personal information on anyone. They then could use this information to benefit themselves. So, what is the easiest and cheapest way to protect against these types of crimes? You need to have the right software to protect against the crime. How do you get the right software? Easy you borrow it from work or someone you know, take it home and copy it. No! Just joking this is called software piracy and it is a crime.
We have already talked briefly about software piracy, but why should we not commit software piracy? It does not cost us anything and the chances of someone coming after us for burning one or two copies of something is very unlikely. We should not copy software for the simple fact the it is not right, not because it is against the law (by this being a the first reason) in the end software piracy will cost us something anyways. When someone commits software piracy, the software company loses money. One person coping software such as Microsoft office which is retailed at about 300 dollars now this is not much to a software company, but 1000 people coping software at 300 dollars is 300,000 dollar and this is a lot to loss even to a large software company. The software company has to make up for the lost somewhere so they raise the price of there software and it is the consumer that pay for it, just because some people do not want to pay for the software that they use. Software piracy can also lead to smaller software developers to go out of business. What happens is that smaller companies cannot afford this type of lost and have to sell out to lager companies. This is bad for the consumer, because some very good software is written by small companies. This in-turn leads to the consumer buying software that is not as good or have to buy the software from big companies and pay higher prices. This is all because some people do not want to pay for what they use.
Now I will ask you the reader and the consumer not to commit, participate or support computer crimes. These types of crimes will hurt all of us and cost us more money as the consumer. If for some reason you are on the internet and find yourself somewhere you are not allowed get out of there and report it to the proper authority. An example of this if you are checking you bank account and find that you have access to other patron s account, you should not copy or use this information. You should exit it immediately and report this to the bank. On the other hand, if there is software that you want, go and buy it that is what gives you the right to use it. So in closing you know what the crimes are in the computer world, don t do them. Be the one to set the example for other to follow, be a leader in our society today, by doing the right thing.