Computer crimes in the state of Tennessee can be lumped into two general categories. They are –
- accessing a computer system for the purpose of gaining money
- gaining intentional and unauthorized access to a computer
The first is a crime that has the intention of using a computer in a way to steal money through various means. The second is simply a crime of access, with a wide range of possible motives as the cause of illegally gaining access. If you have been charged with any type of computer crime in Tennessee, contact us today to get a free consultation.
Accessing a Computer for Money, Property, or Service
When charged with this crime, the state must prove two separate actions took place. The first is that the accused accessed or attempted to access a –
- computer software, or
- computer program or data, or
- computer, computer system or network
In addition, it must be proved that the access was obtained with the purpose of –
- obtaining money, property, or services by making a false statement, representation, or promise, or
- causing computer output to be false for purposes to obtain money, property, or services, or
- effecting the creation or alteration of a financial statement or electronic transfer with intent to disrupt, misappropriate or commit fraud
The severity of the charges in this category of computer crime can range wildly depending on the specifics of the case. Jail time, restitution and probation can all result from a conviction. If the value of the stolen money or property rises above $500, the crime is classified as a felony.
Intentional Access to Computers
There are a total of five types of intentional access crimes related to computers in the state of Tennessee. They are as follows –
- a person who intentionally accesses a computer without consent is guilty of a Class C misdemeanor.
- a person who accesses a computer with the intention of doing damage to the computer or network, or disrupting the proper operation of the computer can be punished up to the value of the damage they have done. This can also be charged as a felony when the amount is over $500.
- a person who introduces malicious input such as a computer virus is guilty of a Class B misdemeanor.
- a person who intentionally accesses a computer network with the purpose of gaining access to a restricted computer has committed a Class A misdemeanor.
- a person who intentionally makes an unauthorized copy of any computer data, programs, or software may be punished up to the value of the damage created.
Because of the nature of computer crimes, and how they are constantly evolving, the charges and punishments can vary greatly from case to case. Regardless of what type of computer crime you have been charged with, it is important to get as qualified a defense as possible. Gregory P. Issacs is an experience defense attorney in the state of Tennessee and will do his best to defend you against these charges. Call our offices today at 865-673-4953 for a free consultation.