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Complaints about combating internet crimes are growing

There are two sides to every coin; and if we make the “coin” in this statement “the internet,” then the two sides could not be further apart. A lot of good can be done over the internet; and there can also be some truly bad things that occur because of the internet. The question about the latter is, how do you properly deal with it? The laws, in many ways, have not caught up to the times. The laws were not originally drawn up with an idea that, someday, a vast ocean of interconnected computer systems would make billions, if not trillions, of things possible. As a result, people who are accused of internet crimes — may it be a relatively innocuous offense or a very serious one — can have charges filed against them that may have been discovered inappropriately. For example, the police may have circumvented the proper channels to obtain a surveillance warrant; or they may have violated the individual’s right to due process in some way. Considering these possibilities, it is interesting to hear of a rising trend in the law enforcement world: the struggles of dealing with internet crime. Members of Parliament in Britain are publically lamenting their country’s inadequate system to combat “low-level” internet crime; and similar complaints are coming out of Canada too. While these issues may not be affecting us here in the U.S. to the same degree, the stories symbolize a growing problem in the criminal defense world: the authorities want to combat internet crimes, but lack the means to do so. This could mean increased incidents of illegal law enforcement tactics to bring down alleged internet criminals. Source: Reuters, “Britain losing battle against internet crime, MPs say,” William James, July 29, 2013

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