Cyber FraudMeet the team
Cyber Fraud Solicitors
Investigations into internet fraud and cases involving cyber criminality are getting more effective year after year.
Authorities around the world are cracking down ever more severely on perpetrators, using advanced digital forensics and other sophisticated methods to track down and prosecute anyone who uses the internet for fraudulent purposes.
If you have been accused or investigated for cyber fraud, you may face a severe penalty. For this reason, it’s extremely important to instruct the internet fraud solicitors at DPP Law as soon as possible.
Here, we explain a little more about cybercrime, its sentencing guidelines and the legal aid we can offer to anyone accused of offences of this kind.
What is considered Cyber Fraud?
Cyber fraud can be simply defined as any criminal activity that uses the internet to illegally and dishonestly gain an advantage – usually financial – over another individual or a company.
Below, we look into the various forms of this type of internet crime and their sentencing guidelines.
Phishing is just one type of criminal activity known as “social engineering” – something we will explore in greater detail later on.
The act of phishing involves tricking an internet user into doing something that will result in them being defrauded. For example, the perpetrator of a phishing scam may send emails or social media messages containing links that, when clicked, download malware onto their computer.
Alternatively, a phishing email may be disguised as correspondence from a reputable party and is used to convince the victim to share personal information or sensitive data such as their bank details.
These will then be misappropriated for the perpetrator’s own gain, whether through identity theft or via the illegal transfer of the victim’s funds into the criminal’s own account.
We mentioned malware in the section above. This term refers to any software that has been designed to cause harm to a network or device or to exploit it for the illegal benefit of the party that has deployed it.
Malware may be programmed to extract data – such as financial information.
Similarly to malware, ransomware is malicious software that attacks a victim’s device – often blocking access or preventing it from becoming usable – with the aim of forcing that victim to take a certain action, such as handing over money, to see the problem reversed.
“DDoS” stands for “distributed denial of service”. It involves the use of a network of compromised devices, often controlled remotely using malware installed without their owners’ knowledge.
This network – or “botnet” is deployed to overwhelm the resources of the victim’s website. There are many reasons why a perpetrator may wish to do this, but blackmail is one of the most common motives.
Social engineering attacks, such as phishing (which we discussed earlier) involve the use of psychological trickery to convince the victim to part with sensitive data such as bank details or access information – whether via a fraudulent link, false online form or any other method.
What to do if you have been accused of the internet or cyber fraud
If you are found guilty of launching cyber attacks like the ones described above, you will face similar penalties to individuals committing credit card fraud, money laundering or any related “offline” crime.
The maximum sentence for offences of this kind is up to 10 years imprisonment and an unlimited fine.
For this reason, as soon as you become aware you may be investigated for this kind of crime, you must get in touch with our cyber fraud lawyers as a matter of urgency.
The experts at DPP Law will be able to help you collect evidence to support your case, accompany you to a police station or any other location for an interview with law enforcement officials, provide you with excellent legal advice and guidance and represent you in court.
Frequently Asked Questions: Cyber Fraud
What causes cyber fraud?
It is possible for cyber fraud to be committed due to insufficient security controls on devices that can access the internet. These may include mobile devices, computers, and even Internet of Things (IoT) appliances like smart TVs.
Cyber fraudsters usually commit these crimes for financial gain – although they may have alternative motivations, such as blackmailing their victims to take a certain form of action.
What is the most common cyber crimes?
The most common fraudulent online activities include phishing, malware and ransomware.
Is internet fraud a serious crime in the United Kingdom?
Yes – cyber fraud is taken just as seriously as credit card fraud, money laundering and other financial crimes, and the UK police’s tough sentences reflect this.
Can you go to jail for scamming online in the UK?
If a person is found guilty of cyber fraud, their sentence will depend on the perceived severity of the offence. At its most extreme, an internet crime of this kind is punishable by up to ten years in prison and an unlimited fine.
Due to the prevalence, severity and diversity of the different types of cyber fraud – including phishing, malware, ransomware, DDoS attacks and social engineering – anyone accused of this crime will be the subject of intense investigations and, if charged, may face significant penalties.
For this reason, if you have been accused of cyber offences, you should get in touch with DPP Law. We have an Emergency Arrest Line that is active 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, 365 days per year.
Contact us today to find out about the legal advice, support and representation we can offer.