Computer Crime


Combatting Cyber crime

Criminals are learning quickly that cyber crime can be inexpensive, low risk and profitable. In one well known incident uncovered in 2007, over 45 million customer records were stolen from a well known North American retailer. The breach occurred over a three year period, during which criminals monitored wireless signals from point of sale credit card terminals. These attacks cost the retailer over $130 million and inflicted unknown financial harm on individual victims.

Also in 2008, 11 people operating in five different countries were charged with breaking into the databases of nine major North American retailers, stealing some 40 million credit and debit card numbers from their databases, and selling the numbers (via the Internet) to other criminals.

Canada’s law enforcement agencies cannot combat trans-national cyber crimes with outdated investigative powers and tools. Equipping our police to protect us in cyberspace requires that we provide them with new legislative authorities and supporting financial resources.

Accordingly, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police will be given the resources required to establish a centralized Integrated Cyber Crime Fusion Center  This team will increase the ability of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to respond, using a risk-based analysis approach, to requests from the Canadian Cyber Incident Response Center regarding cyber attacks against Government or Canada’s critical infrastructure.

The Government has already passed legislation to combat identity theft. Other legislative reforms will be re-introduced by the Government to enhance the capacity of law enforcement to investigate and prosecute cyber crime by:

  • Making it a crime to use a computer system to sexually exploit a child;
  • Requiring Internet service providers to maintain intercept capable systems, so that law enforcement agencies can execute judicially authorized interceptions;
  • Requiring Internet service providers to provide police with basic customer identification data, as this information is essential to combating online crimes that occur in real time, such as child sexual abuse; and
  • Increasing the assistance that Canada provides to its treaty partners in fighting serious crimes.



SC Magazine, “FTC Settles with TJX Over Breach,” March 2008

Wired Magazine, “Feds Charge 11 in Breaches at TJ Maxx, OfficeMax, DSW, Others,” August 2008


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