Feeds

US Senate polishes new teeth for cyber cops

Prosecution made easy

Using blade systems to cut costs and sharpen efficiencies

The US Senate has passed a bill to strengthen the hands of federal prosecutors who fight computer crime by removing some of the more common hurdles in prosecuting online miscreants.

One provision would eliminate a requirement that prosecutors prove illegal activity has caused at least $5,000 in damage before they can bring charges of unauthorized computer access. The threshold often proves problematic in pursuing cyber crime because a single incident may spread the damage across hundreds of thousands of victims. Because the harm is so dispersed, it's often hard to meet the burden.

Under the new legislation, criminals could be charged with a felony if they install spyware or keystroke-monitoring software on 10 or more computers, no matter how much damage is caused. It also allows identity victims to seek restitution for the time they spend trying to restore their credit.

The bill would give the feds additional new powers. For the first time, they could pursue crimes when the miscreant and victim live in the same state. It also contains new provisions for charging cyber extortion.

The new provisions have been added to H.R. 5938, the so-called Former Vice President Protection Act.

Brian Krebs of the Security Fix blog has more about the measure here. ®

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

More from The Register

next story
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
NEW, SINISTER web tracking tech fingerprints your computer by making it draw
Have you been on YouPorn lately, perhaps? White House website?
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Black Hat anti-Tor talk smashed by lawyers' wrecking ball
Unmasking hidden users is too hot for Carnegie-Mellon
Attackers raid SWISS BANKS with DNS and malware bombs
'Retefe' trojan uses clever spin on old attacks to grant total control of bank accounts
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.