Theft of security, financial institution fraud, and software piracy are just a few examples of possible computer crimes that can occur with the use of the Internet. Crimes such as these can be perpetrated instantaneously and the effects are able to spread at an extremely rapid pace. The vulnerability to cyber-crime becomes weaker as the growth and use of computer’s increase. Moreover, there are a handful of laws the State of New Jersey has passed to prosecute computer crimes. These laws are split into different categories such as theft, fraud, copyright infringement, espionage, pornography, or terrorism.
One cyber crime law I came across on the Internet is the 2C:33-4.1 Crime of Cyber-Harassment. Within this law, the Crime of Cyber-Harassment is committed if a person harasses another person through a social networking site by using an electronic device. In this case, harassing is defined as threatening physical harm to a person, threatening that person’s property, and or emotionally harming a person with the use of posts and comments. This crime is considered a fourth degree crime, meaning the person who commits this crime can be penalized to up to 18 months in prison. However, if the person is at a minimum of 21 years old and impersonates as a minor to harass a minor, it would result to a third degree crime, which results to anywhere from 3 to 5 years in prison. In addition, if the person that committed the crime was a minor, meaning under the age of 16, this person will take a course or training program for his or her cyber harassment behavior and or take a class or training program that teaches him or her the dangers and wrongfulness of cyber-harassment.
I think the 2C:3304.1 Crime of Cyber-Harassment law is some-what adequate. The term “cyber-harassment” is very straightforward and well defined. Also, those that commit this crime deserve to be penalized at such a large degree. Cyber Harassment is a serious crime and can result to traumatizing a person emotionally and mentally. However, there are a couple of things within this law I believe should be enforced or expanded. Criminals that are at least 21 years old should also take the same classes and training programs minors must take. Although they are older and ‘legal’ it is important for them to also manage their cyber harassment behavior and become more aware to the dangers associated within this issue. In addition, I think minors should be faced more than just having to take classes and training programs. In some cases, these courses will not fully treat the minor or make the person come to the realization of the wrongfulness within cyber harassment. These children might still continue to commit this crime in the future. I think the parents or guardian should be forced to be more on the lookout of their children’s social media as well.