Surveillance of Cyber-crime

Primary Materials

Through my research on surveillance of the Internet and my narrowed topic, surveillance of cyber crime, I’ve compiled a set of primary materials to aid my research question. These materials are specific examples of cyber-crimes/cyber-criminals and Internet surveillance techniques. One such material is the Carnivore system, of which is installed by the FBI onto a person of subjects ISP to surveil their email communications and to watch for any criminal activities.Carnivore This system provides a past material towards surveillance techniques and will be a crucial example of the scope of surveillance systems compared to current surveillance systems. The Carnivore system, currently obsolete, has been replaced by commercial software to eavesdrop on computer traffic such as the NaruInsight system.Saifudin, Ismail But, where the Carnivore system lacked, the Global Early Warning Information System (GEWIS) provides better Internet surveillance. This system monitors Internet traffic on a global level for information related to cyber terrorism and monitoring the stability of the internet. And when compared to Carnivore it’s most likely the Global Early Warning Information System has gained more support and some security analysis believing that this system is a good idea.PC World GEWIS can survey global cyber crimes, Emails, online communications and other forums of Internet traffic expanding past Emails to protect federal and public computer networks.Computer World Thus, these surveillance systems answer the question towards what Internet surveillance techniques the U.S government uses. Also, will provided insight towards another primary material information warfare and the importance of surveillance techniques used to fight cyber crimes towards U.S Infrastructure and business; which I will discuss further later in my work.

Another primary material is phishing scams, which hold wide techniques to trick internet users to provide personal information FDIC but for my primary material I’ll be focusing on advance fee fraud scams (Nigerian scam). Of which, the cyber criminal sends an anonymous Emails stating that he or she has inherited a large sum of money and needs help in obtaining the funds. Therefore, the all too trusting person that received the Email sends funds to the criminal in hopes of receiving a percentage of the money.FBI But, luckily this scam is easy to distinguish as a fraud by red flags such as being instructed to wire funds as soon as possible, have you only communicated by email, and avoid promises of large amount of money.ADA County Sheriff Another type of phishing scam and primary material is banking scam, where the emails are made to look exactly like their from your bank or other financial institutions; unlike the Nigerian scam these are more dangerous. For example, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has received reports of fraudulent emails that have the appearance of being from the FDIC prompting clients to follow a link, as soon as possible, and update your information. These fraudulent emails attempt to collect personal or confidential information and by clinking onto the provided link prompts the client to download the newest Updates, when in fact the Updates are nothing but malicious software to hack into the clients computer. FDIC Since this banking scam is designed to mimic an actual bank or other financial institutions it becomes obviously harder to protect yourself compared to the Nigerian scam. Therefore leading to a false trust in the email with no grammar error and appropriate legal terms —adding to my the question of why surveillance of cyber crimes is used and the importance of cyber crime surveillance. Thus, these scams further relate to the importance and exigency of having those surveillance techniques listed in the first paragraph.

These next primary materials are an even more threatening forum of cyber crime; Information warfare. Defined by as, "the use of information or information technology during a time of crisis or conflict to achieve or promote specific objectives over a specific adversary or adversaries" Information warfare is far more complex and far-reaching cyber crime that has many broad forums, such as, hacking into power supplies to stealing intellectual property. For my research question; hacking into the U.S. infrastructure and businesses will be my specific materials. If our infrastructure was hacked the repercussions that would ensue would be devastating and could cripple our financial institutions, sow panic and even lead to loss of life. Cyber-security experts have long feared a successful cyber attack against the United States lifeline — its energy pipelines, water supply, and its banks are at risk. U.S. News In the early 1980's, the Soviet Union needed to build a natural gas pipeline and lacked the some of the technology needed to build the pipeline. Using this pipeline as a scenario using modern Information warfare, the Soviet Union hacked into a Canadian firm's computer systems to steal the technology to build the pipeline. But, as the store goes reported from Bloomberg Businessweek, the CIA worked with the Canadian firm and planted components to fail creating a 'logic bomb' and as result the pipeline was destroyed in an explosion.Businessweek This scenario, with the addition of modern technology, offers two aspects of information warfare: the first aspect is of a country hacking into another to gain technology and the second is of information warfare crippling an infrastructure. Information warfare compared to business information warfare is far more threatening, for hacking into business can have an effect on our economy, competitiveness in the world market, and infringement of intellectual property business — cyber crime usually won’t cripple a country or have loss in life.The Chron Business cyber crime shares comparisons in that government are interested in obtaining information in the same way the attacking country would try to attack U.S infrastructure. With the scenario of the Soviet Union trying to obtain technology by hacking into the Canadian firm is an effective example of business information warfare, where a government or a business may try gain advantage over another company or to provide information. The video below discusses on an U.S security firm releasing information of the Chinese hacking into over 140 victims.

Therefore, this material will be the most important from the negative results that would ensue from hacking into U.S. infrastructure and businesses. Further supporting the reasons for surveillance of cyber crimes e.g. Carnivore and Global Early Warning Information Systems.

These forums of cyber crime are hard to pursue and becomes complicated to prosecute, and to police these crimes further surveillance techniques are needed to combat these scams. For instance, their exist secure software that allows Internet users to remain anonymous on the internet making it complicated to track cyber criminals. When or if the cyber criminal is identified, the legal standards of the laws are based on the counties they are in. Requiring trained investigators to coordinate with international partners.Catching Cyber Criminals To improve the process cyber surveillance currently a bill is being proposed through legislation, named Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA). This act has become controversial and would allow voluntary information sharing between private companies and governments on event of a cyber crime — without court-order warrants. And, according to ZDnet civil liberties campaigners believe that this poses a major threat to the Fourth Admendment.ZDnet According to Zack Whitaker of ZDnet, this bill means that a company like Facebook and your cell phone provider can hand over numerous amounts of personal data to U.S. law enforcement. Therefore, this does raise concern for cyber crime surveillance and as mentioned above they're necessary and justifiable reasons for having cyber crime surveillance but it is also necessary to inform the reader of negatives that can be associated. Though, if history follows CISPA will not be able to pass legislation. For example, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) the last bill that had tried to protect the Internet form cyber crimes was met by the largest protest in Internet history in favor of dropping the bill.The Washington Post
This video below discusses the CISPA in detail and the concerns that have risen.

In conclusion, the questions of: what surveillance techniques are used to catch cyber criminals, that be the extinct Carnivore system and the GEWIS, and the importance and exigency of having these surveillance techniques have been answered with the primary materials provided above. Also, as the reader you've been informed that not all of these surveillance techniques are meet with positive favor e.g, CISPA and SOPA, and with passage Internet Freedoms could be lost.

So What?

The Internet has been increasingly revolving around our daily lives and becoming an ever increasing part of our lives through many mediums of social media.Internet growth We can store our bank information, saving accounts, stocks, ideas, and personal information online while making our lives more convenient and less stressful and leaving behind tedious activities, such as driving to the bank, behind. Therefore, our modern internet activities are making our lives easier but those looking to gain personal and financial information can reap this increase of Internet use readily and easily through internet surveillance. This has brought about an increase of cyber crimes and has become a daily threat to anyone using the internet including companies and governments. In 2012 a study was conducted by the Ponemon Institute that has shown an increase in cyber crime by six percent compared to the previous year. Concluding in a doubled increase over the last three years! As a result, governments are investing spying on their citizens and even on other countries in an attempt to defend themselves from cyber crimes that are domestic and foreign.CBS The ACLU has released Justice Department documents revealing a huge increase in electronic surveillance by the U.S federal law enforcement.ACLU Therefore, there are those that feel more than ever surveillance of the internet has become a needed aspect of daily life, not just to defend against cyber criminals but to protect Internet users. While others feel this increase in Internet surveillance can become a negative aspect of our daily lives, of which, I’ll discuss later in the last paragraph.

Therefore, if you have a computer or a smart phone you’re connected to the Internet and are acceptable to threats from cyber criminals and surveillance by the government. This leads to the importance of my research, which I’ve including in my primary materials to provide you with specific examples of cyber crimes and Internet surveillance techniques to catch cyber criminals. Of these Internet surveillance technique materials the United States government has the Carnivore system and the Global Early Warning Information System (GEWIS). These systems monitor Internet traffic for information related to cyber terrorism and monitoring the stability of the Internet; but there are differences in comparing these two systems. The Carnivore system, which is used by the FBI, is installed on a person of interest ISP to survey their email communications.Carnivore The GEWIS monitors on a global scale and can survey cyber crimes, emails, Internet traffic, and online communication.Computer World As you can see from these two systems, the United States has a wide range of systems for surveillance of the Internet that are needed to defend from a wide range of cyber criminals.

Thus, you may be wondering how these systems relate to the protection of our personal information and finances. From the primary materials you've learned that many cyber criminals are focused on tricking internet users to provide your personal information through fraudulent scams including: the Nigerian scam and banking scam. Larger cyber crimes such as: a hacker surveying your personal information, the company you work for has been stringently working on a new product only to be stolen by a cyber criminal and then is sold on the open market, or even our government has fallen in dismay over an attack from another country destroying our online infrastructure.U.S NewsThese cyber crimes are a daily threat to Internet security and require constant surveillance from task forces such as the Electronic Crimes Task Force.The Secret service maintains the Electronic Crimes Task Forces (ECTFs) and has directly contributed to the arrest of transnational cyber criminals for the theft of credit card numbers and that has an approximate loss of $600 million to financial and retail institutions. Even though, $600 million has been lost the potential loss of cyber criminal activities could have been in the billions. The Department of Home Land Security has prevented $1.5 billion in potential losses through cyber crime surveillance and investigations during fiscal year of 2011.Department of Homeland Security

Whether, you’re an average computer users, an employ of a company, or an average citizen when these scenarios above become in perspective you can see the importance of internet surveillance and the possible effects on our lives. Now, that we know the importance of having surveillance techniques of cyber crimes we’ll move onto the negative aspects of Internet surveillance. Currently a bill is being proposed through legislation, named Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA). This act would allow voluntary information sharing between private companies and governments on event of a cyber crime.ZDnet With the scenario mentioned above of a company’s product being stolen and sold onto the open market thru cyber-attacks. Many backers of this bill feel CISPA would help protect these companies from such a scenario and include protection from countries like China and Iran. Opponents feel that there is a negative aspect to this information sharing between government and companies that would allow sharing of users’ private information to the government.PCmag If the opponents are correct, the bill would conclude that we must give up our Internet freedoms for the protection of the ‘greater good’. If history follows CISPA will not be able to pass legislation. For example, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) the last bill that had tried to protect the Internet form cyber crimes met the largest protest in Internet history in favor of dropping the bill. According to The Guardian’s journalist Amy Goodman, the protest ranged from large to small websites going dark in protest over the proposed legislation that would censor the web.The Guardian Of which, The Electronic Frontier Foundation was one such example of a website that protested. The Electronic Frontier Foundation was created to protect our rights in the digital world, which the website has disapproved of both SOPA and CISPA.EFF Therefore, we as citizens should be suspicious and informed of any types of cyber-crimes/cyber-crime surveillance and whether or not we may lose some of our internet freedoms in the process. In conclusion, I hope thru my research that I’ve informed the reader and other Internet users, be companies or governments, the importance of cyber crimes and cyber crime surveillance threats to personal information loss or to the negative aspect of Internet surveillance.

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