The Dark world of Cyber-Crime

Crime is a challenge for the good thinking world. While changing the time and invention of new and advanced technologies, the world of crime is also being changed. The tools and techniques are changing everyday. The burning reflection of that is, 20th centuries most important, remarkable and epoch-making invention computer related crimes, which is better known as cyber crime or cyberspace crime or simply computer crime. Computer also has two opposite sides like a coin. One side, for the gift of computer technology, the whole world is now become much more compact. Simultaneously at the opposite, in the world of crime, a new seed has burgeoned.

Encyclopedia Britannica defines computer crime as, any crime that is committed be means of special knowledge or expert use of computer technology. 166 computer crime can involve criminal activities that are traditional in nature, such as theft, fraud, forgery, defamation, abuse and mischief. There are mainly 37 kinds of cyber crimes out there. Now let’s discuss about some of the most common and frequently committed acts wherein the computer is a tool for an unlawful acts. This kind of activity usually involves a modification of a conventional crime by using computers.

(1) Hacking: – Hacking is simply defined as unauthorized access to computer system or networks. This is done for stealing information stored in computer hard disks, are estimated to cost United States corporations onwards of $63 billion a year. Government agencies are not immune. The department of defense is attacked by hackers 2, 50,000 estimated times each year only one 500 of these include of this incidents detected. Hacking can compromise an entire organization, such as the destruction of a Website, or may involves the corruption of a few files. The hacking process has several components such as – foot printing (the ability to obtain essential information about the target organization), the second one is, automation ping sweep and the final process is called enumeration. Billions of dollars are spent annually worldwide in efforts to protect computer security is still a low priority of many organization. However, with the burgeoning of the internet and the establishment of in-house intranets, on which the companies existence depends, the issue of hacking can only grow in importance.

(2) Cyber pornography: – This would include pornographic websites, pornographic magazines produced using computers and the internet.

(3) E-mail spoofing: – A spoofed e-main is one that appears to originate from one source but actually has been sent from another source.

(4) E-mail bombing: – This is refers to sending a large number of emails, to the victim resulting in the victim’s e-mail account or mail servers crashing.

(5) Logic bombs: – There are event dependent programs. This implies that these programs are created to do something only when a certain event (known as a trigger event) occurs.

(6) Trojan attacks: – A Trojan as this program is aptly called, is an unauthorized program which functions from inside what seems to be an authorized program, thereby concealing what it is actually doing.

(7) Salami attacks: – This attacks are used for the commission of financial crimes. The key here is to make the alternation so insignificant that in a single case it would go completely unnoticed.

(8) Web jacking,

(9) Cyber terrorism,

(10) Intellectual property right/ Distribution of pirated software,

(11) Trafficking,

(12) Cyber vandalism,

(13) Pyramid schemes on the Internet,

(14) Fraud & Cheating

(15) Virus/ Worm attacks and many more unconventional cyber crimes.

Crime on the computer is committed in a very systematic, sophisticated and complex manner. Some tools and techniques of cyber crime are – unauthorized access, packet sniffing, a spynet log file, tempest attack, password cracking, buffer overflow and etc etc.

A writing of crime will be incomplete without the discussion about the criminals. This is very difficult to believe; but this is the truth that, most amateur hackers and cyber criminals are teenagers, the age group in between 9 -18, who have just began to understand what appears to be a lot about computers, it is a matter of pride to have hacked into a computer system or Website. The simple reason for this type of delinquent behavior pattern in children is seen mostly due to the inquisitiveness to know and explore the things. There were also organized hackers, professional hackers/crackers and discontented employees out there. The reason for organized hackers to do hacking is may be to fulfill their political bias, fundamentalism, etc. The Pakistanis are said to be one of the best quality hackers in the world. In case of professional hackers/crackers, their work is motivated by the color of money. And the group of discontented employees includes those people who have been either sacked by their employer or are dissatisfied with their employer.

Indian scenario of Cyber crime: – The internet in India is growing rapidly. It has given rise to new opportunities in every field we can think of – be it entertainment, business, sports or education. Given the unrestricted number of free Web sites, the Internet is undeniably open to exploitation. “Any criminal activity that uses a computer either as an instrumentality, target or a means for perpetuating further crimes comes within the ambit of cyber crime,” says Supreme Court advocate and cyber law expert Pavan Duggal.

While the worldwide scenario on cyber crime looks bleak, the situation in India isn’t any better. There are no concrete statistics but, according to Duggal, Indian corporate and government sites have been attacked or defaced more than 780 times between February 2000 and December 2002. In cities such as Bangalore, New Delhi and Mumbai, where cyber crime cells do exist, there is potential for improvement. Law enforcement agencies are not well-equipped and oriented about cyber crime yet.

Cyber crimes in India are slowly evolving from a simple e-mail crime to more serious crimes like hacking and source code theft. Indian hackers always thought they were too sophisticated to fall into the hands of the rough cops in this country, whom various human rights groups routinely accuse of brutality. But, that feeling evaporated after one of the four people arrested recently in connection with a hacking incident accused Mumbai police of breaking his hand during interrogation.

According to Sundari Nanda, SP, CBI, “most of the times the victims do not complain, may be because they are aware of the extent of the crime committed against them, or as in the case of business houses, they don’t want to confess their system is not secure”. As the research shows, computer crime poses a real threat. Those who believe otherwise simply have not been awakened by the massive losses and setbacks experienced by companies worldwide. Money and intellectual property have been stolen, corporate operations impeded, and jobs lost as a result of computer crime. To prevent this, the all corporate world or any other business houses only need to do is, to be aware and any matter should be reported at once. Saileshkumar Zarkar, technical advisor and network security consultant to the Mumbai Police Cyber crime Cell, advocates the 5P mantra for online security: Precaution, Prevention, Protection, Preservation and Perseverance. More importantly, users must try and save any electronic information trail on their computers. That’s all one can do, then, until laws become more stringent or technology more advanced. You’ve been warned.

Original Post