International Trends


Current and Developing International Trends in Criminal Justice Name Class Date Professor

International Trends


Current and Developing International Trends in Criminal Justice In the past the criminal justice system was focused on preventing, deterring, investigating, and punishing criminal offenders that committed the traditional street or white collared crime. In current society the goals of the criminal justice system have changed and adapted to evolving trends in society. The development of rapidly evolving technology has created a new Information Age that comes paired with a whole new set of crimes. New technology has improved many processes and functions in society but it has also created a whole new set of crime problems for the criminal justice system. New technology has resulted in the development of the cyber crime and the threat of international terrorism attacks on America and other westernized countries. This has resulted in rapid polices changes and a need for the criminal justice system to adapt, especially law enforcement. When the personal computer and the internet became a household item it also became a tool for the criminal to commit cyber crimes. These crimes include all types of frauds designed to provide a financial benefit to the criminal, acts of malicious attacks, theft of sensitive intelligence and personal information of citizens, and as a tool for spreading a terroristic message. The criminal that uses the internet and the computer to commit cyber crimes can mask their criminal behavior and get away scot free. Because technology is rapidly changing and improving the budgets of law enforcement agencies large and small cannot keep pace. In order to stop the cyber criminal all law enforcement agencies must be equipped with IT processionals that understand the technology being used to commit the crime. When the police are not equipped to

International Trends


investigate cyber crimes the victim does not get justice and they criminal remains in society creating new victims. Cyber crime in America is the most rapidly growing crime with frauds, such as identity theft or hacking into the financial accounts of their victims and stealing money, or trespassing into a citizen or businesses computer in order to steal private information or to commit a malicious attack on the company’s network systems. Cyber criminals hack into the computers and send viruses that enable the thief to steal the passwords and account information of their victims. These crimes could be occurring in America or can be the result of thief’s in another country. Tracking and identifying these criminals is not the only one challenge facing the criminal justice system. Once identified the criminal; justice system facing jurisdictional issues in arresting and trying the offender for the crime. If the crime is committed in the United States there are federal agencies designed to arrest and try these offenders but when the source is international jurisdictional issues make it almost impossible to apprehend the guilty offenders. Until international polices are created that are designed to fight cyber crime criminal justice agencies in America will struggle to punish the offender and instead must focus on intervention. Cyber crime statistics developed by the Bureau of justice statistics show that 67 of businesses have suffered from some sort of cyber attack, whether it be fraud or corruption of information systems, while 60% of citizens have been the victim of some form of cyber crime (BJS, 2011). Of the attacks that occurred against the business only 11% had the technological capabilities to detect the attack and over half included multiple incidents. Approximately 68% of the victims of cyber theft sustained monetary loss of $10,000 or more. By comparison, 34% of the businesses

International Trends


detecting cyber attacks and 31% of businesses detecting other computer security incidents lost more than $10,000 (BJS, 2011). New cyber laws and policies have been created in order to fight the cyber criminal and reduce the impact to the victim. There are currently over forty federal statutes addressing cyber crime and each state has their own cybercrime laws. Computer Crime, also known as cybercrime, ecrime, and high tech refers to criminal activity that involves the use of a computer and the internet (Doyle, 2010). The first federal laws on cyber crime was created in 1996 was the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act but were deemed federal offenses in 1986 when cyber crimes were first defined and with the enactment of the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act. The impact of cybercrime on society does not only involve the crime victim but also the use of the new technologies in order to engage in international terroristic behaviors. New technology has created new opportunities for criminals but has also created new opportunities for terrorist. In the past the threat of terrorism was a distant problem that only affected Americans that travelled to foreign countries know for their terroristic threats. In current society the terrorist has the use of new technology to commit acts that cross borders into Western countries and have allowed them to commit act against directly in the United States. September 11, 2011 forever changed the life of every American on the continent. After the vicious attacks using American airplane resulted in the death of almost 3,000 Americans the true threat of new technology was realized. Terrorist can now employ new developing technology to commit acts of terror against Americans in foreign countries as well as in America. The threat is

International Trends


so grave that the government and transportation avenues have taken great strides in preventing any further attacks. The largest responsibility for preventing any further attacks from occurring in the United States falls on the shoulders of law enforcement. The F.B.I is tasked with developing intelligence that will alert the country to potential terrorist threats as well as gathering intelligence form state and local law enforcement agencies across the nation. After 9/11 Homeland Security was created and designed to ensure that intelligence concerning the domestic or the international threat are properly disseminated and to ensure law enforcement is properly prepared to deal with the threat. They are tasked with ensuring the safety of the nation and punishing any terrorist that makes an overt action against America or one of her citizens. Since the attacks of the US government, during the Bush Administration, develop legislation designed to stop and punish domestic or foreign terrorist threats. The new legislation contained the Patriot Act which is designed to broaden the investigatory powers of the police to ensure they have the authority to investigate potential terrorist threats in American society (Benjamin, 2011). The Patriot Act is new legislation enacted just a few months after the attacks by Islamic extremists that includes broadening the surveillance capabilities of law enforcement, allows law enforcement to employ roving wire taps, conduct investigations without providing any warning to suspected terrorists, obtain private records of potential terrorist, and to remove any potential terroristic threats from society. While the Patriot Act seemed to be a necessary piece of legislation it has also created uproar in society over its constitutionality. The patriot act provides police officers with broad discretion, designed to ensure the safety of the nation, but in this broad authority the privacy of the citizen

International Trends


and their right against unreasonable search and seizure has been violated the police no longer require a search warrant if the suspect a citizen is a “potential terrorist” and can even remove them from society indefinitely without any proof they have engaged in terroristic behavior. Police can also employ roving wiretaps that pick up the private conversations of all citizens in the area as well as pry into the private digital communications of the citizen. Another international trend that is directly impacting the criminal justice system in current society is transnational organized crime groups. Technology has not only improved the ability of the nation’s criminal and the terrorist but it has also improved the ability of the organized crime groups. The American organized crime groups are no longer the only threat to America with transnational organized crime groups taking advantage of new technologies to commit crimes in America. The transnational organized crime groups not only poses a criminal threat to America but are also responsible for providing aid to terrorist organizations that pose a threat to American and its citizens. In order to prevent transnational organized crime groups from posing a threat to society and aiding the terrorist the police have been afforded broadened investigatory power to curb their illegal activities. There are many different trends currently affecting the criminal justice system and creating a need for the criminal justice system to adapt and evolve. As society becomes globalized so will crimes. Current international criminal justice measures, such as international courts, do not have the authority to punish the criminal offender and can only provide advice to the host country. In order to ensure that the new growing international criminal threat can be curbed there will need to be a more effective response.

International Trends


References Benjamin, M. (2011). New Patriot Act controversy: Is the government Collecting Cell Phone Data? Retrieved October 5, 2012 from,8599,2079666,00.html Bureau of Justice Statistics. (2011). Cybercrime Statistics 2010. Retrieved October 5, 2012 from Doyle, C. (2010). Cyber Crime: An Overview of the Federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Statute and Related Federal Criminal Laws. Retrieved October 5, 2012 from

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