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Technology and White Collar Crimes Featured

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Corporate Espionage

Corporate espionage is of the common white collar crimes. This crime entails theft of trade secrets through the recording, copying or removal or valuable and confidential information from a company. Corporate espionage is mainly driven by commercial reasons. Development in the technological field has increased the opportunity to commit corporate espionage. A significant development that has propagated the crime of corporate espionage is the production of mobile computing devices. 

The past few years have been typified by rapid development in the field of mobile and portable computing devices. Mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, SD cards and laptops have become common in modern day corporations. These devices have the capacity to transfer and store large amount of data. The portable nature of these devices has made it effortless for persons to enter and exit corporate premises without raising suspicion. Smart phones are the most challenging of these technologies are organizations cannot prevent their workers from coming to work their cell phones.

Networks have also increased the opportunity for committing corporate espionage. Many modern corporations have well-developed computer networks that are linked to the internet. Companies use these networks to transfer and retrieve information. The existence of these networks has increased the threat of unauthorized access to company information. It is now easy for cyber criminals to gain access to organization’s systems from remote locations. The threat created by networks was highlighted in hacking case involving a Chinese businessman, Bin, and the Boeing Company. Bin was able to hack Boeing systems from remote location and access organization documents (Tiezzi, 2014).

Corporate espionage has a destructive effect on organizations, the economy and members of society. This crime affects organization by diminishing its goodwill, affecting it competitive advantage and reducing its profitability (Danielson, 2009). Trade secrets represent the intellectual property of an organization, which is part of the firm’s intangible assets. Theft of these secrets leads to loss of good will. Similarly, trade secrets give organization a competitive advantage. Theft of these secrets erodes the advantage that the organization enjoyed leading to reduced profitability. Corporate espionage affects the economy and members of society by discouraging corporations from innovating. Companies are likely to reduce their investment in research and development when they cannot benefit from their innovation due to corporate espionage. Reduced innovation is likely to have a negative effect on the economy. It will also affect the quality and quantity of products available to members of society.

Law enforcement agencies can use technologies such as social media to monitor activities of corporate espionage suspects. The police can also track suspects’ activities by scrutinizing the emails and phone records.  The CCTV technology can be used to provide evidence where data is stolen from a physical location.

Internet Fraud Schemes

Internet fraud schemes are plots made by criminals so as to obtain property or money fraudulently over the internet. There are different types of internet fraud schemes. The most common fraud scheme is the action fraud. Action fraud is where a person misrepresents a product in an internet auction site or fails to delivers a product that was exhibited in auction site despite receiving money from customers (The Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2014).  Another common fraud scheme is the counterfeit cashier’s check. This schemes target traders who use the internet to sell their merchandise. The architects of these schemes use fake checks to obtain property or goods in fraudulent manner. Credit card fraud is also a common fraud scheme. Credit card fraud entails the use of fraudulent credit cards to obtain goods from online traders. There also numerous fraud schemes involving employment or business opportunities.

Advancement in the internet and network technologies has increased the opportunities for internet fraud scheme. The internet has become a significant trade platform in recent years (The Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2014). Thousands of business transactions are conducted over the internet every day. This trend has increased the numbers of target for internet fraud stars. The prevalent of network technologies has also made it easy for criminals to steal debit/ credit card information from unsecured websites and systems. Many banks and credit card companies have experienced breaches in the networks and systems leading to loss of information and clients’ money. Home Depot is the latest firm to be affected by credit card fraud schemes (NBC News, 2014).

Internet fraud schemes also have destructive effects on companies, individuals and the economy. The fraud schemes affect individuals by causing loss of property and finances. Many individual fall victims to these fraud stars leading to the loss of money (The Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2014). Companies also suffer financial losses, litigation, and damaged reputation as results of these fraud schemes. Companies that experience security breaches get negative publicity. Internet fraud schemes also hurt the economy as it discourages online trade. The prevalence of internet fraud schemes has made people distrustful of internet transactions. Police can make use of technologies such as social media to track internet fraud stars.

References

Danielson, M. (2009). Economic espionage. A framework for a workable solution. Minn J.L. Sci & Tech. 10 (2), 503- 548

NBC News (2014). 56 million credit cards involved in home depot breach. Retrieved from http://www.nbcnews.com/tech/security/56-million-cards-affected-home-depot-breach-company-says-n206671

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (2014). Internet fraud. Retrieved from http://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/fraud/internet_fraud

Tiezzi, S. (2014). The new U.S. court case against Chinese hacking. The Diplomat. Retrieved from http://thediplomat.com/2014/07/the-new-us-court-case-against-chinese-hacking/

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