Cybercrime encompasses a spectrum of activities that occur within the virtual realm of cyberspace or are facilitated by digital or networked technologies. These activities include, among others, identity theft, financial fraud and scams, child pornography, drug and violent offenses, and espionage. Further, cybercrime is closely related to issues of digital evidence, technological innovation and infrastructure, and big data. It is one of the most rapidly evolving and exponentially growing emergent global social problems.
Such crime disproportionately impacts children, women, and the elderly, demographics that comprise most local communities in the United States. These specific victim populations often fall prey to scams, fraud, and abuse in the forms of harassment, stalking, and sexual exploitation, all facilitated through digital technologies and cyberspace.
Local law enforcement agencies are at the front lines of responding to cybercrime. Addressing the issue relates directly to their ability to fulfill their missions and serve their local communities, including their most vulnerable populations.