Feeds

Govt report card logs UK hacking conviction success rate

56% - Could do better

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

Sixty-one of the 108 people prosecuted under UK hacking laws between 2003 and 2007 were convicted.

The number of successful prosecutions under the Computer Misuse Act came in a written parliamentary answer by Claire Ward, junior minister at the Ministry of Justice, in response to a question from Cardiff Lib Dem MP Jennifer Willott. The answer - published in Hansard here - gives a break-down by year and seriousness of offence.

Section One, the least serious category, includes simple unauthorised access to a computer while Section three offences cover the creation of computer viruses and (more recently) the instigation of denial of service attacks that impair the operation of computers. Section Two offences cover unauthorised modification (computer hacking) as a part of some other crime.

With such a small sample it is perhaps a bit rash to look for trends. However the less cautious might note that the rate of successful prosecutions was roughly consistent between 2004 and 2007, after starting with a lowly one-in-four hit rate back in 2003. Delving deeper into risky waters it might also be noted that success rates for Section Three prosecutions are higher than those for Section Two cases, as least between 2004 and 2007. Stats for 2008 will only become available later this year.

The figures only cover prosecutions where computer hacking offences were the principal offence under consideration by the courts (ie. the one likely or actually leading to the toughest punishment on conviction). Figures from both magistrate and crown court prosecutions are included in the figures.

The written answer on CMA prosecutions was published as part of Hansard's record for parliamentary proceedings for 16 September but only made available online on Tuesday (22 September). ®

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

More from The Register

next story
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
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
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
Four fake Google haxbots hit YOUR WEBSITE every day
Goog the perfect ruse to slip into SEO orfice
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
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.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
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.