Cyber-vigilantism refers to the vigilantism actions taken by internet users either over the internet or by using applications that be subject to the internet. It comprises vigilantism actions meant to reduce or wipe out cyber-crimes, scams and non-internet related conduct. The main explanation for vigilantism is the lack of central authority to curb all these cyber-crimes and scams thus creating the need for reactions against such behaviors. The lack of central authority to control internet usage has been the reason for the high cases of cyber-crimes, scams that have been a problem to all users of the internet. It is due to this behavior that vigilantism has gained root simply to curb this menace. Examples of vigilantism include scam baiting, public shaming, anti-pedophile internet vigilantism, identity theft activism and many more.
In my opinion I think this method has witnessed a level of success in trying to prevent crime in the internet. Although it has witnessed mixed results in the past it is a very good way to try to prevent and to reduce crimes that are rampant in the internet. The main reasons why Cyber-vigilantism has been a success is the fact that it is a way of identifying and exposing individuals who are misusing the internet space for selfish gains. It can also be used to identify criminals and get access to their plans before they actually carry them out.
Forensic analysts have the major task of providing evidence to aid the justice system in charging criminals in the court of law. Their main work is to help investigators in their job to solve crimes and in this case internet based crimes. To be able to successfully obtain evidence that can be used in a court of law to charge a cyber-criminal is somehow difficult. The analyst must have the ability to conduct exhaustive forensic analysis by employing proper scrutiny and handling measures and communicating the results of their analysis effectively.
It is general knowledge that a lot of personal information gets exchanged over the internet on a daily basis. This has encouraged criminals who are seeking this personal information to aid them in performing several criminal activities against their victims. The use of commercial forensic packages has been advantageous in trying to catch up with these criminals among other benefits. Commercial forensic packages are useful in identifying and preventing corporate fraud that has been a major headache to the corporate world. It can also be used in solving intellectual property disputes and cyber theft. It helps analysts to make proper investigation to produce electronic evidence that will be admissible in a court of law. It is an important field in that it helps retrieve information that has been lost, damaged or deleted. The main advantage being that it can be able to search and analyze a huge chunk of data within a short period of time and efficiently.
The main disadvantage of commercial forensic packages if the fact that all the electronic or digital gathered must be turned into a state where it is admissible in court. The data must not be tampered with in any way and should comply with the standards required in a court of law. The other disadvantage is the cost of retrieving data which might be very expensive.
For a forensic analyst to be able to effectively offer explanations on his work regarding digital crime. By doing this they will be making it easy for the justice system to punish wrong doers in the digital world. For a forensic analyst to succeed in this kind of environment he must be equally knowledgeable on digital crimes and how to crack on these digital criminals.
Storage systems are very important for the over-usage of computers that is the norm today. The use of volatile and non-volatile storage systems has been a subject of discussion as to which one is best. A volatile storage system refers to computer memory that uses power for it to retain its stored information. It has the ability to retain the data stored in it only when on power but loses the information once the power is lost or if it is turned off. It is mainly used for primary storage and has several uses such as a RAM drive. It is faster compared to other forms of storage like the hard drive. This makes it useful in protecting sensitive information that will be vanished when power is switched off and vulnerable to malicious access only while powered. Non-volatile storage memory is the opposite of the volatile memory. This one stores its information whether powered or not. It is mainly used for secondary storage of information that will be used for a long time.
The use of non-volatile memory to produce evidence in court is much more safe that the volatile memory. This is mainly because information stored in a non-volatile memory can be easily retrieved compared to volatile memory that requires the device to be fully powered to be able to get access to the information.
Digital evidence refers to the information that is stored or transmitted in a digital form and can be used as evidence in a court of law. However before this evidence is accepted in court it must be determined whether it is reliable or not. It should also be determined whether a copy of it is required or an original version of it must be produced to make it admissible as evidence in the court of law. The procedure of obtaining digital evidence first requires a warrant by the legal authority to obtain such evidence. After the warrant has been approved by the legal authorities then a digital investigation can be carried out.
During this process of digital investigation, the actions of the forensic investigator should not interfere with the original data. If this is unavoidable then it is advisable that the effect of the investigator’s work must be identified clearly and any process that brings any changes to the information must be properly justified. All records regarding the process of obtaining this information and holding of it should be made clearly keeping both copies and original data. The forensic investigator must not undertake an activity beyond his knowledge in the field. The legal rights of everybody that might be affected by these actions must be considered at all times.
Barber, R. (January 01, 2001). The Evolution of Intrusion Detection Systems — The Next Step. Computers & Security, 20, 2, 132-145.
Taylor, R. W. (2011). Digital crime and digital terrorism. Upper Saddle River, N.J: Prentice Hall.