Defenses to Cybercrime Charges

Defenses to Cybercrime Charges

Cybercrimes are criminal offenses committed using the Internet or other computer technology. Internet fraud/cybercrime cases are often complex, involving multiple people and locations across numerous states.

The FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) 2017 Internet Crime Report reveals that it received 301,580 total complaints with reported losses of more than $1.4 billion. Arizona ranked fifth in loss by victim per state, totally nearly $60 million in losses. The FBI and other agencies are zealously prosecuting alleged perpetrators of cybercrimes.

Cybercrime Charges

Congress enacted the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) in 1986 in an effort to make it easier for the government to prosecute new crimes arising with the rapid expansion of computer use.

Internet fraud cases are often charged under the CFAA, which prohibits accessing a computer without authorization or exceeding authorized access and obtaining financial records, information from any department or agency of the United States, or information from any protected computer. 18 U.S.C. § 1030(a)(2).

The CFAA also prohibits, among other things,  knowingly, and with the intent to defraud, accessing a protected computer without authorization in order to further a fraud and/or to obtain something of value, trafficking in passwords affecting interstate commerce, or knowingly causing damage to a protected computer through the transfer of a program, information, or code. 18 U.S.C. § 1030.

Depending on the nature of the cybercrime scheme, a person may be charged under other federal laws, such as fraud in connection with identification information (18 U.S.C. § 1028), fraud in connection with counterfeit access devises (18 U.S.C. § 1029), interception and disclosure of electronic communications (18 U.S.C. § 2511), wire fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1343), or other federal laws.

Earlier this year, Governor Ducey by executive order created the Arizona Cybersecurity Team aimed at addressing the consistent threat of cyber-attacks that Arizona faces. This increased focus on cybersecurity may lead the government to unwittingly file charges against people who did nothing wrong or did not know they were doing anything wrong.

Defenses to Cybercrime Charges

If you are facing cybercrime charges, there are defenses available to you. The defenses available to you are case-specific and dependent on the facts of your case. The experienced white collar criminal defense attorneys at Ashley D. Adams, PLC can review your case for weaknesses in the prosecution’s evidence and design the best possible legal defense for you.

Defenses to cybercrime charges may include:

  • Lack of knowledge defense: Perhaps you did not know what you were doing, did not know your actions were fraudulent, and you did not intend to commit fraud.
  • Authorization defense: Showing that you were actually authorized to access the information.
  • Tainted evidence: Arguing to get evidence against you excluded because it was gathered illegally in violation of your constitutional rights.
  • Mistaken identity: You are not the actual perpetrator of the alleged crime.

When we represent you, we will analyze and evaluate each detail of your case looking for ways that show you are not guilty of the crimes charged.

Mounting a strong defense against fraud charges requires specialized skills. Prosecutors do not pursue fraud charges unless they believe they have enough evidence to prove the elements of the crime in a trial. You need an attorney who understands the tactics and procedures the government will use to obtain a conviction. You need an attorney who can combat aggressive prosecutors. Ashley D. Adams is that attorney.

At Ashley D. Adams, PLC we zealously defend all types of cybercrimes and internet fraud cases. Our attorneys are particularly knowledgeable regarding cybercrimes and have extensive experience in white collar criminal defense at both the federal and state level.

We will fight back for you and protect your rights. Contact us or call now (480) 219-1366 for a consultation.

We practice excellence, one client at a time.


The attorneys at Ashley D. Adams, PLC handles state criminal cases throughout Arizona and federal criminal cases throughout the United States, including Arizona, Oklahoma, Utah, and California.