Internet Crimes

Minnesota Internet Crimes Lawyer & Attorney

Most of the world’s population can now access the Internet.  It is a method in which people communicate with one another, find information, and many even make their living through ecommerce.  People even study and attend online college courses.  That is how the Internet has taken the world by storm.

But in addition to these great things about the Internet, there is also the dark side of the Internet.  In 2013, the Internet Crime Complaint Center reported nearly 263,000 Internet crime complaints.  These crimes resulted in an over  $781,841,611 million loss because of the way the Internet has changed the way the world does business within and outside of borders.

Types of Internet Crimes See Internet Crime Center

Although it may not seem like it, there are a number of convictions that can take place.  For those who have been charged, a Minnesota Internet crimes defense attorney can help in this situation.  Whether guilty or innocent, it is important to have legal representation.

The types of Internet crimes include:

• Auto-Auction Fraud – Many of these listings are for vehicles located outside the United States.  In most cases the criminal attempts to sell vehicles they do not own.

• Romance Scams –Victims believe they are “dating” a good and honest person without ever physically meeting them.

• FBI Scams – Perpetrators attempt to intimidate victims in emails by purporting to be high ranking government officials.  Many scams exploit the FBI name or the names of FBI executives such as the current FBI Director, James Comey, and FBI former Director Robert Mueller, both of which had terms as the FBI’s Director during 2013.

• Hit Man Scam –The scam originated as a person sending an e-mail portraying himself as a hit man hired to kill the victim.  The e-mail instructs the recipient to pay a fee to remain safe and avoid having the hit carried out.

• Ransomware/Scareware Scams –These schemes are used to target and extort funds from victims by intimidating them.

• Cryptolocker Ransomware – The virus encrypts various file types and then a pop-up window appears on victims’ computer that states their data has been encrypted.  The only way to get it back is to send a specified monetary payment to the perpetrator.

• Child Pornography Scareware –The victim’s computer locks up and displays a warning that the user has violated U.S. federal law.  Child pornography is either embedded in a banner image that appears on the victims’ screen or revealed via an automatic browser redirecting them to a child pornography website.

• Citadel Ransomware – The Citadel ransomware, named Reveton, displays a warning on the victims’ computer purportedly from a law enforcement agency claiming that their computer had been used for illegal activities, such as downloading copyrighted software or child pornography.

• Fake or Rogue Anti-Virus Software – In these scheme victims is scared into purchasing anti-virus software that would allegedly remove viruses from their computers.

• Real-Estate Rental Scams – Perpetrators search websites that list homes for sale and take information from legitimate ads and post it with their own e-mail addresses on online advertising sites.  The houses are usually listed with below-market rental rates to immediately attract potential victims.

• Rent—via a wire transfer service.  In some cases the perpetrators require potential renters to fill out credit applications so they can obtain personal information, e.g., credit history, employment history, Social Security number and any number of other crimes.

• Grandparent Telephone Scams – Perpetrators target elderly individuals by claiming to be a grandson, granddaughter, or other relative in desperate need of legal or financial assistance.  Most schemes involve claims of being arrested or in some type of accident.

• Timeshare Marketing Scams – Timeshare owners across the country are being scammed out of millions of dollars by unscrupulous companies that promise to sell or rent their properties

• Work-at-Home (Employment) Scams – Work-at-home scams continue to be very successful as more and more people turn to the Internet to look for jobs. Poor economic conditions lead people in financial hardships to accept any job they are offered.

• Software Company Telephone Scams – Victims of these telephone scams began receiving calls from individuals allegedly claiming to be from legitimate, well-known software companies.

• Payday Loan Scams – In the payday loan scam or loan intimidation scam, the perpetrator relentlessly attempts to contact victims via their home, cell and work phone numbers.  Victims are told they are delinquent on a payday loan and must repay the loan to avoid legal consequences.

• Loan Modification Scams – A loan modification scam often starts when a bogus loan company contacts a distressed homeowner via phone, e-mail or mailing, and offers them a loan modification plan.

• Sextortion Scams – Perpetrators of these scams often initiate conversation via social media websites and/or online dating websites.  Once a rapport has been established, victims are asked to engage in video chats in which they are manipulated to expose themselves in sexually compromising situations, while their images are secretly recorded.

• Gun Sale Scams – Fraudsters begin this scam by enticing victims into purchasing firearms by advertising them below market value.  They post advertisements using photos and bogus descriptions lifted from legitimate firearm ads.

• Photo and Mug Shot Scam – Scammers post photos or mug shots of individuals to extort money.  Some victims have reported they were juveniles at the time of the arrest and the information should be sealed, while others complain the information is fakery or completely made up.

• College and University Scams –the perpetrators register domains similar to domains owned by well-known colleges and universities.  Once similar domains are registered, they establish an e-mail address that appears to be from the purchasing department of a legitimate institution.  Another method they spear-phishing e-mails that are sent to the university employees to dupe them into giving up their log-in credentials to the schools’ websites. Non delivery of merchandise or payment.

Internet Crimes Penalties

Internet crimes are usually tried in federal court.  This means you need a Minnesota Internet crimes defense lawyer with experience defending individuals in federal court.  There are differences between federal court and state court.  The federal penalties are much harsher than the state penalties. The penalties can include: Prison time, large fines, restitution to victims, loss of your job and difficulty finding a new one, community service, loss of the ability to own firearms, and the inability to travel to other countries.

Minnesota Criminal Defense Lawyer & Attorney

If you’ve been accused of an Internet crime, you need an experienced Twin Cities Internet crimes lawyer to help you in your case.  You need someone by your side from start to finish who has experience in federal court and who will be aggressive in your case.

So call J. Anthony Torres at (612) 861-4926 for your free initial consultation. You will be one step closer to ensuring that you get the best results possible in your case through experienced and aggressive representation. Torres Law Office is conveniently located at 3960 Minnehaha Avenue South, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55406 and is easily accessible by clients from Uptown and the greater Twin Cities metro area, including Minneapolis, St. Paul, Minnetonka, Edina, Roseville, Golden Valley, Bloomington, Richfield, Eagan, Woodbury, Maplewood, Shakopee, Wayzata, Apple Valley, Chanhassen, Columbia Heights, Burnsville, Carver County, Dakota County, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Scott County and Washington County. We handle cases throughout the state of Minnesota.