Cybercrimes Enforcement: A State Perspective

The advent of the Internet created great opportunities for mankind to share information, expand knowledge, develop new commerce, and make the world seem smaller and more connected. Unfortunately, it also provided a new environment ripe for criminals to target all types of victims. As this new technology expanded, so did the various ways that criminals use cyberspace to attack individuals, corporations, and governments. In the United States, these crimes have been largely left to the federal law enforcement agencies for investigation and prosecution with limited exceptions. The challenges of investigating cyber-related crimes are many. Suspects and victims cross local, state, and international jurisdictions. Until recently, whenever state and local law enforcement agencies discussed cyber issues, it was generally about cybersecurity, which is the process of taking defensive actions to protect agency computers and databases from attack. This article will describe how these agencies are beginning to partner with federal agencies to engage various cyber criminals through proactive enforcement.