Computer Crimes

Computer Crimes

(September 2022) This primer provides a general overview of the federal statutes and guidelines for computer crimes. For purposes of this primer, “computer crimes” include offenses where the computer is the gravamen of the offense or sentencing enhancement. As such, this primer primarily focuses on certain offenses found in 18 U.S.C. §§ 1030 and 1037, such as computer and email fraud, computer espionage, extortion relating to protected computers, and trespass on a government computer, and specific sentencing provisions within guidelines applicable to those offenses. In addition, this primer discusses application of §3B1.3 (Abuse of Position of Trust or Use of Special Skill) in cases involving computers or the internet. Although the primer identifies some of the key cases and concepts, it is not a comprehensive compilation of authority nor intended to be a substitute for independent research and analysis of primary sources.