The argument being if I understand it correctly that cybercrime is just… crime.
Which as I think about it… seems like an interesting distinction.
I don’t think it’s helpful for the average person to distinguish between the two a whole lot. Much like burglary victims often experience depression and feelings of violation after the “safety” of their homes has been compromised. Even though there is no “person” crime as there is with murder or rape, the victims of “cyber”-crime that I have crossed paths with often exhibit similar signs of feeling violated that resemble the behavior of the victims of “real” crimes that I’ve interacted with.
What happens in the real world and what happens in the legal world are two different things. A computer vandalism may not meet the requirements of a law concerning physical vandalism and so from a legal perspective it can be very useful to make a distinction between the two. Rewriting the law to address both instances in one law may be overly broad.
Perhaps it is useful for the court room to make a distinction, but for the average person I’m not sure it serves much purpose. At what point does a cybercrime become something that you can call the police about?
While there certainly are some interesting entanglements in the boundaries between crimes committed in the digital world and the physical world… I get the impression from people I talk with that some think that cybercrime is less serious than “real” crime. Followed by thinking that you can’t really expect a response from the police about cybercrime. Granted I’m not aware of too many police departments that have well staffed and equipped cybercrime departments. However, there certainly are more than there used to be and will continue to grow. Also in their defense most PDs are far understaffed and under equipped to address all the crime. It’s unrealistic to expect to be able to address all crime. They certainly can deal with a lot of it and at the very least clean up the mess and write a report. However, the idea that our law enforcement can stop crime and protect us from harm is really just a pipe dream. Unless you have a police officer who shadows you’re every move there will always be lag time between someone committing an offense against you and the police response. Assuming of course that a single officer can address your problem.
For the average person though there seems to be a fuzzy line between when cybercrime can be addressed like “real” crime by law enforcement. It’ll be interesting to see if this distinction changes as cybercrime has grown more organized and continues to do so in the coming years.