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Los Angeles Federal Computer Hacking Lawyers

Defending Those Convicted of Hacking Crimes

When you hear the term “hacking,” you may picture high-tech computers with green text on black screens. The truth is, however, that in our modern age, hacking is a very real and very prevalent crime. Our justice system is still working out how to charge hackers and, as such, they may be determined to arrest and convict someone suspected of the crime, rather than truly work out who is guilty and who is not.

If you have been charged with federal computer hacking, then you are in desperate need of an excellent defense. Our attorneys at Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP can offer you just that. With our many years of experience, our Los Angeles federal crime defense attorneys can fight against whatever the prosecution tries to throw at you. If you have been charged with the crime of hacking, call our firm at (213) 688-0460 and find out why we are among the best in Los Angeles.

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What Is Hacking?

Media may have convinced you that hacking is a crime that involves randomly typing code into a computer and suddenly accessing someone else’s personal files. Truthfully, however, hacking is legally considered the act of breaking into a computer system. This can mean that you simply stole or guessed someone’s password without having much knowledge about computers. If you are tried on a federal level, then you will likely be charged using the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, which forbids the unauthorized access, distribution, or use of any information related to federal security.

It is important to note that there are cases where hacking is completely legal. “Ethical hacking” is a common practice where someone gets permission from a business or government body to hack into a system to find out where its weaknesses are. Companies that claim their online operations are secure often have had multiple people hack into said operations before launch to determine what weak points need to be strengthened. Doing this without clear consent, however, is illegal, even if you did it with the purpose of later helping those you hacked.

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The Penalties for Computer Hacking

Hacking is an incredibly broad crime, and there are many subcategories associated with it. The penalties you may face following a conviction will depend on what exactly you allegedly did and what information you allegedly took, used, or sold. Without knowing the underlying crime, there is no way to truly determine what your possible sentence will include. However, a few common hacking crimes are:

Accessing a Computer to Defraud and Obtain Anything of Value:

  • Up to 5 years in prison for the first conviction
  • Up to 10 years in prison for the second conviction

Accessing a Computer and Obtaining Information:

  • Between 1 to 5 years in prison for the first conviction
  • Up to 10 years in prison for the second conviction

Obtaining National Security Information:

  • Up to 10 years in prison for the first conviction
  • Up to 20 years in prison for the second conviction

Extortion Involving Computers:

  • Up to 5 years in prison for the first conviction
  • Up to 10 years in prison for the second conviction

Trafficking Passwords:

  • Up to 1 year in prison for the first conviction
  • Up to 10 years in prison for the second conviction

Even the most minor offense among these hacking crimes could still result in a year-long prison sentence. Hacking crimes can be a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on what exact crime was committed. While having a misdemeanor on your record is difficult enough, being charged with a felony will mean that certain rights you may have become accustomed to will be stripped away. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Working for government agencies
  • International travel
  • Voting
  • Owning a firearm
  • Visiting or parenting your children

Losing these rights can be incredibly difficult, especially if your children have been taken away from you. It is every parent’s worst nightmare to not be a part of their kids’ lives. That is why putting together the best possible defense during your trial is so important.

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Defending Against Los Angeles Hacking Charges

With a good legal defense, you can beat your charges, or at least lessen your penalties. Doing so, however, means that you need a knowledgeable hacking defense attorney who can launch an investigation into your case. A successful defense will come from the facts around your arrest and the alleged crimes. Some defenses commonly used in hacking cases include:

  • You had no knowledge of the criminal act, or that the act was criminal
  • You are not the party responsible for the hack
  • You were given consent to perform the hack
  • You were freely given access to the system, and thus no hacking was involved
  • The officers or agents who arrested you were acting unlawfully

Not just any defense will work. You need to be able to refute the evidence that the prosecution brings to the table, as well as provide some evidence to support your claims as well. Remember, the prosecution has the job of proving that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. All you must do is demonstrate that you may not be guilty. While you do have the right to a public defender, many are notoriously overworked, and so yours will not be able to give you the time you need. Your best chance of winning your case is to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney with extensive case results.

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Work With Our Los Angeles Federal Crime Attorneys

At Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP, our Los Angeles federal computer hacking lawyers have years of experience working within the criminal justice system. We know the courts, the prosecution, and the best possible defenses. Meaning that we can fight to get you acquitted, or, at the very least, fight to get you the lightest sentence possible. If you have been charged with hacking or computer fraud, then you need the best legal representation on your side. Call our firm at (213) 688-0460 to find out why our clients always walk away from their trials with a smile.

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Additional Information

Contact Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP Today
Phone: (213) 688-0460
Fax: (213) 624-1942

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    Attorney Mark Werksman’s 29 year old client was falsely accused of molesting two neighborhood children and was subsequently charged with felony child molestation, with a significant prison sentence hanging over his head should he be convicted. Instead, at the preliminary hearing Werksman was able to convince the court to grant his client a complete dismissal of any charges.
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    Client, a college student in a faulty Title IX case, was awarded $130,000 in attorney fees.
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    Wilmington man accused in New York federal court of laundering drug money through the sale of laptop computers. Mark was able to get the case transferred to federal court in Los Angeles, where he convinced the United States Attorney to reduce the charges. His client was sentenced to probation with no jail time on a misdemeanor conviction.
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