Computer crimes are on the rise across the United States and are a focal point for federal and state law enforcement agencies across all levels of government. Port Charlotte is no exception, having experienced a sharp increase in complaints related to offenses against computer users in the last decade.
Being charged with an offense against computer users is extremely serious. You could face years in prison and thousands of dollars in fines if you are convicted in a criminal trial. Determining which law firm to represent you is an important decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Your criminal defense attorney needs to be knowledgeable on the Florida Statutes concerning computer crimes and keep up to date with rapid changes in enforcement and punishments for defendants in these cases.
If you have been charged with an offense against computer users, you need to contact The Law Place as soon as possible. We offer the best attorney-client relationship in Port Charlotte County with cutting edge legal services for defendants of computer crimes. Schedule a free consultation with a Florida attorney to gain more insight into the information below.
Call The Law Place now at (941) 444-4444.
What Is an Offense Against Computer Users in Florida?
The criminal code listed by Florida Statute 815.06 defines what is considered to be an offense against computer users. Under this statute, willfully, knowingly, and without authorization or permission accessing or denying access to a computer or computer system is considered an offense against computer users.
If you are unsure if yours or a loved one’s actions constitute an offense against computer users, contact The Law Place to find out more information from one of our qualified criminal defense attorneys. They can examine the facts of your case and give you a realistic expectation of what charges may be leveled against you, if any.
Definitions of Terms Used in Florida Offense Against Computer Users Charges
The criminal statute concerning offenses against computer users has many terms that carry specific legal definitions that may vary from your understanding of what they mean. The following terms may be used in any charges that are brought in computer crimes cases:
- Computer – An electronic device used to process information automatically.
- Access – Making use of any information or data stored in a computer, computer system, or computer network via instruction, communication, storage, or receipt.
- Data – An electronic or physical representation of information, knowledge, facts, software, programs, or instructions.
- User – An authorized person allowed to maintain or make use of the computer or computer system.
- Computer network – The physical and digital infrastructure that allows computers and computer systems to communicate with each other. This includes the connections to peripheral technology such as printers, monitors, speakers, and other electronic devices connected to a computer system. An electronic medium of communication between computer systems.
- Computer program or software – The digital instructions that allow a computer or computer system to operate and perform set tasks.
- Computer services – The tasks that computers can complete for users, such as time, data processing, or storage functions.
- Electronic device – An appliance, tool, or peripheral technology that has the ability to communicate with a computer or computer system across a computer network for various purposes.
- Computer contaminant – Any data, set of instructions, or malignant programming meant to damage, destroy, or record the input or output of a computer or computer system.
- Intellectual property – The data or computer programs that are owned by an individual or a corporate entity.
- Property – Anything valuable, both tangible and intangible.
- Financial instrument – Any form of monetary guarantee, such as a check, cash, draft, money order, credit card, or letter of credit.
Your criminal defense attorney must know all of these legal definitions in and out. Contact The Law Place to find out how this information applies to the specific charges you may be facing.
Is an Offense Against a Computer User a Felony in Florida?
Offenses against computer users are taken very seriously by the government of Florida. Any crime that falls under this category is prosecutable as a felony. The intention and results of the crime will determine if someone is charged with a felony in the third, second, or first-degree.
- Disrupting the transmission of data from one computer or computer user to another.
- Willfully, knowingly, and without authorization or beyond the scope of one’s authorization accessing a computer or computer system.
- Damaging, destroying, stealing, or otherwise injuring a computer, computer system, or supplies intended for use in computers or electronic devices.
- Contaminating a computer, computer system, electronic device, or computer network.
- Accessing the video or audio input or output of a computer system without authorization.
- Causing more than $5,000 in property damage, both tangible and intangible.
- Defrauding or intending to defraud computer users to obtain property or any sort of financial instrument.
- Damaging, destroying, or disrupting public infrastructures such as public transport, communications, the water supply, or a government project.
- Endangering a human life by committing any of the above-mentioned actions.
- Disrupting, destroying, or otherwise damaging computers, computer systems, computer networks, or electronic devices used to administer medical care.
Available Penalties for Offenses Against Computer Users in Florida
- 5 years in prison.
- $5,000 in fines.
- 15 years in prison.
- $10,000 in fines.
- 30 years in prison.
- $10,000 in fines.
Can I Be Sued for an Offense Against Computer Users?
While you can’t be sued for an offense against computer users specifically, you can be sued for the effects that the crime had on people. You can be taken to civil court to be held accountable for the damage that your actions may have had on the lives of the people connected to the computer or computer system in question.
For example, publically releasing someone’s personal information on the internet can have detrimental effects on their career and personal well-being. The victim may have recourse to file a lawsuit in civil court for the pain and suffering they endured because of the crime. If the hack resulted in a loss of income, they could also sue for economic damages.
The Law Place is experienced in both criminal and civil court trials. If you have been served with a civil court summons due to an alleged offense against computer users, contact us immediately to start preparing your defense. We can work on your criminal charges and prepare for a possible lawsuit as well.
Possible Defense Strategies for an Offense Against Computer Users
There are a few ways an attorney from The Law Place can defend you from criminal charges of this nature. Depending on the circumstances of your case, we may be able to prove that you were:
- Legally acting within the scope of your registered employment.
- Participating in a government project or security operation with the authorization of relevant third parties of government entities.
- Executing a search warrant or an exception to a search warrant as handed down by the courts.
These aren’t the only ways we can defend our clients from an offense against computer users case. Consult a qualified Florida attorney to find out how we can help you or your loved ones today.
Contact The Law Place Florida Offense Against Computer Users Lawyer Today!
Have you been charged with an offense against computer users in Port Charlotte, Florida? Were you unaware that your actions were considered a felony and afraid of what the consequences might be?
Contact The Law Place immediately to get quality legal advice about the specific charges you’re facing and what we can do about it. A criminal defense attorney from our law firm has the combined support and experience of over 75 years throughout the State of Florida. We aggressively fight on the behalf of our clients to get the charges against them dropped or reduced, striving for the best outcome available in every case we take on.
Our law firm offers a free consultation with one of our attorneys, where our fee structure and potential defense strategies will be explained to you in full. There are no surprise costs associated with our representation, and our initial legal advice comes free of charge. You won’t find a better attorney-client relationship in Port Charlotte.
Consult with a leading criminal defense attorney now.
Contact The Law Place today at (941) 444-4444.