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Example research essay topic: Law Enforcement Agencies White Collar Crime - 1,194 words

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Computers and Crime As our technology has greatly advanced over the past 50 years, our businesses, people, and its governments have been greatly affected by this new technology. With the vast capabilities of computers, the Internet, storage capability, and the manipulation of data, today's world has been changed forever. Although the benefits greatly outweigh the disadvantages, unless we take a more serious look at this new technology, more people will be hurt, from businesses, families, individuals, and most importantly, our children. Even as new technology has created more uses for its users, firewalls, password protections, and new programs to safeguard our children when viewing the Internet, our vulnerability increases with our perceived values and reliance on this new technology. There are new increased opportunities for the deviant individual than was ever thought of. Computer crime started almost 40 years ago with what was called a hacker.

Since that time computer crime has been expanded to include espionage both industrial and governmental, security risks, white-collar crime to include disgruntled employees who "fix" a program, or delete certain files from certain programs, and from embezzlement. Due to the advance technology of computers, including advances that are old before they are placed on the market, certain criminal enterprises find as many ways that they can use these technologies to advance themselves either for financial gain, child pornography, are the use of viruses just to show the world that they can do it for fun and kicks or just to hurt anyone. Due to the disadvantages of this wondrous technology certain laws are being passed just to try and put a dent in this arena. Unfortunately, for every one individual you arrest ten more go free, even our law enforcement agencies are swamped and at this time, there is no light at the end of tunnel. The areas to be investigated in this paper are pedophiles, hackers, how it affects the banking industry, software thievery, and how it effects everyday businesses.

According to Was (1985), software thievery is out of control and security managers do not have a firm control of this problem. Many employees make copies of software programs, thinking that this is "ok" when in fact it is not. Many software companies spend untold hours and millions of dollars in making a software program. When a employee needs a certain program from home, they either copy the program from the computer, disks that the program came on, or they just borrow the program and take it home and install this on their own computer. This not only hurts the employee's employer, but this also hurts the software company, as they lose the revenue of this lost sale.

There are also individuals who make untold copies of a program and then sell this to unsuspecting customers, just to make a quick buck. Although many software companies make new encoded copy protection system, there are many hackers who find a way to crack the code in order to make illegal copies of the software. One needs to remember that software programs are copyrighted just like a book. According to Bequai (1984), there has been much resistance in Congress to pass a bill concerning any form on of federal computer security protection acts or computer crime bill. Bequai (1984) stated that "Our police agencies, whether local, state, or federal, will tell you that they are presently ill-equipped and lacking in resources to investigate and bring to prosecution criminals who employ computer technology. " He also states that even the criminal justice system can not handle this new influx of computer crime while still trying to stem street crime. Approximately two dozen states at that time, have adopted or enacted their own computer crime legislation bills to have a chance to fight this new crime.

This was their first step in the long battle with the many high technology crimes that have abounded. Due to the ineptness of Congress and their bureaucratic red tape, would rather concern themselves with street crime rather than with the white-collar crime that is overwhelming our police agencies. This report also states that there are organizations that our trying to fight these bills, because they feel that "Our free enterprise system would come to an end, " and "Our prisons would be filled with "honest businessmen. " As it turns out, these statement made by these groups were found to be baseless and unfounded. Our free enterprise system is still here, and these so called "honest" businessmen (of course if these "honest" businessmen were not involved in criminal activities, they would not be in prison), are not over crowding our prison systems. Then we have the purists who feel that there are many loopholes in any bill that is introduced and disagree with the term of computers. Most any bill that is passed will have some degree of loopholes, and when we find them, we would make an attempt to close them.

Bequai (1984) states that "the threat of computers are two-fold. First, there is the cost of these crimes, and as the professional criminal begins to use this technology, the problem will escalate dramatically. There is justifiable concern can open the floodgates of government regulation. " The cost of these crimes although at that time was small compared to other white-collar crimes where now it has escalated to a much higher level. This is a growing problem, and this seems at that time, that Congress was not concerned about it. As of this writing, there has been more reaction from Congress to pass more laws concerning computer crime, that it may be possible that the floodgates have been opened. According to Durkin (1997), "child sex abuse is widely recognized as an especially serious problem in the United States. " Due to the Internet, our fast growing technology, the deviant behavior of pedophiles, and support groups on the Internet, child abuse is getting out of control.

The misuse and abuse of the Internet by pedophiles has been receiving a modest amount lately and our law enforcement agencies are trying to combat this problem. Some of the methods that these law enforcement agencies are employing are as follows: logging on to the chat groups and follow what is going on, reading the newsgroups which support pedophiles to find out what is being delivered, supported, or messages that have been posted, to find out if there are any illegal activities being made. Some of these law enforcement agencies are employing the use of these chat groups to lure pedophiles into a false sense of security, to come and meet them "saying that they are about the same age." Pedophiles on the Internet are a very dangerous combination. They not only try and meet their next victim, but they also send pornography to other children and pedophiles. Even when they are caught, normally they just receive probation. That in itself does not help the situation.

The probation officers are not that well up to date concerning the Internet, and computers with pedophiles. While on probation, who is there to monitor the actions of these pedophiles, as they go right back to doing the same thing as before? W...


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