4 pages/≈1100 words
Emerging Technologies (Essay Sample)
Advantages and the Use of Computers in Investigationssource..
Advantages and the Use of Computers in Investigations
Computer technology has greatly changed the way rimes are investigated. It has shortened the time taken to discover information as information that could take many weeks or months to uncover usually take hours or days. With the presence of many websites requiring personal information of its users in order to access and use their services, suspects can be located very fast so long as their personal information such as physical location or phone numbers can easily be found in the internet. Using computer systems, law enforcement officers have their database management systems connected to those of other law enforcement agencies (Information System Security, 1997). This makes them capable of pursuing suspects who are fond of jumping to other states to avoid detection. In this regard, law enforcement officers work with other agencies to track and bring such suspects to book.
In addition to cameras that allow law enforcement officers to identify suspects in crime scenes, the large amount of memories in computer systems allow for storage of large volumes of data for a long period of time, thereby allowing officers to analyze trends of crimes and criminals. Computers can also process images clearly to render a clear image of the face of a suspect or identification that can be used as evidence in court. The emergent of social networking sites help law enforcement officers to trace suspects through finding suspectsâ€™ personal information or getting to know their whereabouts through their friends in social networking sites. The DNA technology enhances effective comparison and matching of suspects to scenes of crime or eliminating them. In addition to taking suspects to jail, the DNA technology has increased accountability as it has led to the release of innocent suspects. Generally, computer technology has enhanced fast, efficient and effective crime investigation.
Disadvantages to Law Enforcement with respect to the Advancements of Computers
While computer technology poses a lot of advantages to law enforcement agencies, it comes with its disadvantages. Computer technology leads to the emergent of new forms of crimes that are difficult to prosecute. With the rapid changing nature of information technology, criminals come up with unique forms of computer crimes that pose a great threat the operations of law enforcement officers. Crimes such as money laundering have been inculcated in the internet and organizations lose a lot of money to criminals who go unpunished. Crimes such as cyber terrorism, impersonation, and fraud are common in the internet. These makes law enforcement agencies to come up with various ways to curb such crime, though their efforts have not been effective.
While there have been strict measures to improve privacy and security of information owned by law enforcement officers, hackers work around the clock to compromise the systems and get critical information that could leave the security of a country at a threat (Hinduja, 2007). Computer technology improves every day and law enforcement agencies strive to use new technologies to improve efficiency and performance. The new technologies normally come with security holes that when not considered in time, can make a system to be compromised.
Just like any other technology, computer systems can make errors. Such errors can lead to wrongful prosecution and detention of innocent people who can cause a lot of problems to the agencies when the computers report the right information at a later date. While personal information of criminals got in the internet greatly assist law enforcement agencies to track and get suspects, the use of such information without the consent of the ownersâ€™ raises ethical concerns to an institution that should encourage the practice of the right moral and ethical principles.
A Case Where a Computer was Used to Commission a Crime
The Trident Breach case that a group of hackers used computer system to steal $70 million from accounts of 400 American organizations and companies (Rock Center, 2012). The group of hackers used ZeuS virus to get userâ€™s bank account information. ZeuS was a key logger program which knew when users visited the websites and entered passwords and usernames, recorded the information and sent it to the hackers who accessed and stole money. Professor Warner, helped FBI to crack and identify the hackers using complex techniques of data mining and social networking site, Facebook. All the suspects, except one, were arrested.
A Case where the Use of the Computer was Beneficial to the Prosecution in a Criminal Case
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