Since the rise of computer technology throughout the United States, a number of crimes using the technology place challenges on law enforcement. Known popularly as cyber crimes, these offenses required additional laws to help investigators with enforcement. Most of these laws were passed in the early part of the 21st century and address specific violations against consumers and vulnerable individuals as well as national security.
According to Title 18 of the U.S. Code, a number of laws exist that relate to fraud with computer use. These laws mandate the correct procedures and activities available to federal law enforcement in these cyber crime cases.
In 2003, the PROTECT Act was passed with the intent of protecting children. The law includes provisions used to prosecute the exploitation of children on the Internet and computers.
Amendments to the Homeland Security Act of 2002 detail the levels of security needed to enhance cyber security within the U.S. This law defines the parameters of sentencing and enforcement action the federal government can take to protect America.
In an effort to restrict the amount of commercial email, the Anti-Spam Act was passed by Congress in 2003. The cyber crime law also allows Internet providers to make assessments about excessive email traffic.
ID theft was addressed in the Identify Theft Enforcement and Restitution Act of 2008, signed by President George W. Bush shortly before he left office. This allows prosecutors to press charges against criminals for damages as low as $5,000.
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