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Cyberterrorism: Terrorism and IT

By Vladimir Golubev
Date: May 16, 2003

Cyberterrorism Fighting The development of modern information technologies has resulted to occurrence of new kinds of crimes, such as computer crimes and computer terrorism. The computer crime is an illegal intervention in work of computers, systems and computer networks^; plunder misappropriation and extortion of the computer information. Today the acts of cyberterrorism are widely shown in the Internet^; it is the new form of terrorism which uses computers and modern information technologies for terrorist goal achievement.

Novelty of these problems has caught napping law enforcement bodies which appeared not ready to counteract and fight this phenomenon. Today the problem of computer crime and cyberterrorism is beyond control of law enforcement bodies and threatens become a serious national and international problem.

Article 258 of the Ukraine’s Criminal Code (Act of terrorism) provides the criminal liability for terrorism. This article defines terrorism act as the use of weapon, explosion, arson or other actions which create danger for a human life and health^; causing of significant property harm or approach of other grave consequences if such actions have been made with the purpose of impact public safety, intimidation of the people, provocation of the military or international conflict^; actions aimed to influence on government, officials, public organizations, juridical person^; attraction of the public attention to certain political, religious or other sights of the terrorist.

According to considered article, it is possible to define the term "cyberterrorism". Computer terrorism (Cyberterrorism) is understood as deliberate, politically motivated attack on the computer information, system and networks, which creates danger to a life or health of people or coming of other grave consequences if such actions have been accomplished with the purpose to impact public safety, intimidations of people, and provocation of the military conflict. Computer terrorism (cyberterrorism), in our opinion, is shown in threat of violence, keeping people in awe with the object of achievement certain political or other goal, compulsion to the certain actions, to attract attention to the person of the cyberterrorist or the terrorist organization.

Prominent feature of cyberterrorism and its difference from cybercrime is its openness. The terms of the terrorist are widely notified.

The cyberterrorism is the serious threat to mankind and could be compared to the nuclear, bacteriological and chemical weapon. And the threat of cyberterrorism is not studied well.

Computer Crime Research Center

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