Spring 2019 Course Schedule

Computer Crime (LAW-836-001)
Clement McGovern

Meets: 06:00 PM - 07:50 PM (Th) - Warren - Room N103

Enrolled: 21 / Limit: 25

Administrator Access


There are no notices at this time.


The Computer Crime Seminar will explore the legal issues that judges, legislators, prosecutors, and defense attorneys confront as they respond to the recent explosion in computer-related crime. In particular, we will consider how crimes in cyberspace will challenge traditional approaches to the investigation, prosecution, and defense of crime that have evolved from the investigation and prosecution of crimes committed in the “physical” world. Topics will include: the Fourth Amendment in cyberspace, the law of electronic surveillance, computer hacking, computer viruses, encryption, online economic espionage, cyberterrorism, federal/state relations in the enforcement of computer crime laws, civil liberties online and ethics.

The class will also provide a comprehensive overview of the use of criminal law to regulate criminal conduct perpetrated with the use of a computer or through the use of the Internet. The course will also include a thorough review of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act which provides the statutory authority criminalizing types of “computer misuse, such as hacking, computer intrusion and the propagation of worms and viruses. During the course of the semester we will examine other federal criminal statutes most often used in the fight against the proliferation of online crime, including various types of fraud, economic espionage, criminal infringement of copyright and child exploitation.

With an understanding of the federal criminal statutes governing the use of computers and the Internet, the course will then survey the procedural laws that prosecutors use to collect electronic evidence: The Stored Communications Act (or ECPA), the Wiretap and PenTrap statutes, and traditional search and seizure investigative techniques governed by the Fourth Amendment. The Computer Related Law class builds on the Criminal Law class which provided students with a solid foundational understanding of Fourth Amendment Law.

Textbooks and Other Materials

The textbook information on this page was provided by the instructor. Students should use this information when considering purchases from the AU Campus Store or other vendors. Students may check to determine if books are currently available for purchase online.

There is no textbook required for this course. All reading materials will be posted and available online.

First Class Readings

Not available at this time.