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Happy 30th Birthday CFAA!

Six things we still don’t know about the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act after all this time.

Sara Peters

October 14, 2016

7 Slides

The U.S. Computer Fraud and Abuse Act turns the stylish age of 30 years young this Sunday. Yet, it still has a mystique. After all these years and trials and tinkering, do we really know our definitive piece of American cybercrime law at all?

It’s worth snuggling up with the entire legal text some lazy Sunday morning, but to save you some time, we’ll zero in on the most problematic questions surrounding the CFAA. It all starts with a phrase that shows up in the law again and again: “intentionally accesses a protected computer without authorization, and as a result of such conduct, causes damage and loss.”

Read on to learn more about what that might and might not mean.

About the Author(s)

Sara Peters

Senior Editor

Sara Peters is Senior Editor at Dark Reading and formerly the editor-in-chief of Enterprise Efficiency. Prior that she was senior editor for the Computer Security Institute, writing and speaking about virtualization, identity management, cybersecurity law, and a myriad of other topics. She authored the 2009 CSI Computer Crime and Security Survey and founded the CSI Working Group on Web Security Research Law -- a collaborative project that investigated the dichotomy between laws regulating software vulnerability disclosure and those regulating Web vulnerability disclosure.


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