Feeds

DoJ cyber-crime site helps Feds make busts

Your tax dollars at work

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

The US Department of Justice launched a Web site devoted to electronic crime called cybercrime.gov on Monday. The site is maintained by the Criminal Division’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS) to provide information on crimes related to the Internet, focusing on hackers and intellectual property violations. Sections cover such topics as protecting infrastructure, intellectual property, and the scourge of cryptography, which the Department still entertains hopes of defeating. "We anticipate that market forces will make key recovery products a de facto industry standard and thus preserve the balance of privacy and public safety that our Constitution embodies," the DoJ predicts. The text of a controversial DoJ report which we described here is also provided. Other areas include discussions of e-commerce issues, detailed guidance for snitches, and a common-sense FAQ for kids to surf the Web in relative safety. Sprouts are also warned not to get involved in hacking: "If you like computers, don't use your brains to hack systems, invade other people's privacy, and take away their networks. Hacking can get you in a whole lot more trouble than you think and is a completely creepy thing to do. If you're so smart, use that computer to do great things!" The site contains a substantial legal reference library and numerous handbooks and guidance documents, the chief purpose of which appears to be coaching law enforcement agents in what they can and can't get away with when pursuing evidence of an electronic crime. Some of it makes interesting reading. For example, we were intrigued by the open reference to monitoring the communications of a "target" for whom a search warrant has not yet been obtained: "If a target's screen is displaying evidence which agents reasonably believe to be in danger [of destruction], the 'exigent circumstances' doctrine would justify downloading the information before obtaining a warrant. For example, agents may know that the incriminating data is not actually stored on the suspect's machine, but is only temporarily on line from a second network storage site in another building, city, or district." Other advice speaks to preserving evidence, and to conducting warrantless searches which the courts will recognise. "Under the 'exigent circumstances' exception to the warrant requirement, agents can search without a warrant if the circumstances would cause a reasonable person to believe it to be necessary," the guidance explains. However, "courts have suppressed evidence where the officers had time to get a warrant but failed to do so. Some courts have even ruled that exigent circumstances did not exist if the law enforcement officers had time to obtain a warrant by telephone," it warns. We also learned that third-party authority to search a computer "rests rather on mutual use of the property by persons generally having joint access or control for most purposes, so that it is reasonable to recognize that any of the co-inhabitants has the right to permit the inspection in his own right and that the others have assumed the risk that one of their number might permit the common area to be searched." This means that your flatmate can authorise the Feds to search your computer. But there are always exceptions, and this one is worth noting: "Courts may honor claims to privacy where the defendant has taken some special steps to protect his personal effects from the scrutiny of others, and others lack ready access. The Fourth Circuit held that a mother's authority to permit police officers to inspect her 23-year-old son's room did not include his locked footlocker in the room." Translation for power users? If you encrypt your files, your flatmate's consent to search a computer which you both share does not extend to your protected data. Hence the constant DoJ harping on the need for cryptographic controls and "recovery products", we suppose. ® Related Stories Reno, FBI feast on bad network security Janet Reno proposes on-line police squad Congress clarifies spy warrant legislation Janet Reno dismisses central cyber-security agency Law enforcers the 'absolute worst people' for Net security - former Fed Crypto must be controlled -- FBI director How the FBI can r00t your hard drive FBI seeks to apply RICO laws to hackers FBI phone-snoop regs challenged by Net privacy groups US anti-smut bill may go too far Clinton's Big Plan against cyberterror US crypto plan aims to bug PCs

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Premier League wants to PURGE ALL FOOTIE GIFs from social media
Not paying Murdoch? You're gonna get a right LEGALLING - thanks to automated software
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Ballmer quits Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Online tat bazaar eBay coughs to YET ANOTHER outage
Web-based flea market struck dumb by size and scale of fail
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.