Go phish! How a wrong click can land you in hot water

When some people go "phishing," they don't need a pole. But they do dangle bait of the digital kind in hopes of hooking a big one on their line.

Most phishing scams are white collar crimes that focus on identity theft. Hackers devise web pages and emails that look very much like a legitimate financial institute's or business's actual site or email. But instead of taking you to that site, if the target clicks onto the false link, they wind up entering all of their information into the spoofed website's data bank to be used later for nefarious purposes.

To understand the breadth and depth of the damage that can occur when somebody falls for a phishing scam, it's been reported that the recent hacking into the Democratic party's emails that affected the most recent presidential election was facilitated by John Podesta falling for a spear-phishing tactic.

Quite rightly, the government takes allegations of all internet crimes very seriously. They employ their own staff of white-hat hackers to detect and deter those they suspect of hacking. Getting caught up in a federal investigation into internet crime can take the sails out of most defendants.

Just as there are many ways to hack and deceive to get into off-limits computer systems, there are also plenty of ways for innocent individuals to get accused of crimes they never committed simply by having access to a certain computer network, log-in or password.

If you stand accused of an internet crime, it is always best to retain your criminal defense attorney early on in your case and make sure that your defense is as solid as possible.


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