What is cyberspace, cyberterrorism and cybercrime?

Marcin Jankowski  •  19/February/2018 (12:52), update 8/March/2018 (22:47)
In the available scientific literature devoted to security issues, many definitions of the concept of security have been given, which has evolved over the years and is still subject to constant changes. However, one of the basic forms of defining the occurring processes in this matter has been adopted by the definition presented by Brig. prof. dr. hab. Stanisław Kozieja, who presented security as a state of absence of threats and at the same time the process of achieving and maintaining this state of absence of threats. It has been assumed that the institutions of the executive, legislative and judiciary are responsible for the security of the state, in particular in the internal sphere. However, it should be emphasized that this obligation also belongs to each person in the relevant scope.
What is cyberspace, cyberterrorism and cybercrime?

Cyberspace as a Global Place of Attacks Conducted by Cyber Criminals

Going further, it should be borne in mind that new technologies in the field of computer networks have now become one of the fastest growing scientific areas and at the same time have a huge impact on global economic and social development in the 21st century. In the virtual world, which is a kind of mapping of the real world, the boundary between one and the other has blurred over time, and the emergence of such phenomena as terrorism and crime in cyberspace.

With the course of the ongoing economic processes, the development of new technologies and the risks associated with them, work began on defining the most important concepts that would facilitate the definition of what we are dealing with and transfer it to the legal side. Many of these concepts are subject to change even today with the development of the field of cybersecurity.

Cyberspace where, among others there are undesirable phenomena that interest us in terms of this work, it has been legally defined in Polish legislation as a space for processing and exchange of information by collaborating IT devices and software.

Cyberspace has become independent of the place and time, and to get access to it just need a suitable device with the possibility of connecting to a computer network. At the same time, continuous work on improving these devices and dedicated software means that the costs and difficulties of connecting with cyberspace are decreasing. In security matters, the big difficulty will be the fact that computer networks also allow anonymity for users using cyberspace.

However, unambiguous definition of the term cyber terrorism is a complicated matter, because the problem is very fluid and ambiguous. The creator of this concept is an employee of the Institute for Security and Intelligence from California - Barry Collin, who combined two concepts - terrorism and cyberspace. In his opinion cyberterrorism is a conscious use of the ICT system or its part to carry out a terrorist operation. It is clear that at first the computer was perceived only as a tool and not as a target.

On the other hand, cyberterrorism as the actions blocking, distorting or destroying processed and stored information in teleinformatic systems is defined by Robert Kośla.

On the one hand, the development of computer networks has made current economic and social trends dictated and dependent on access to fast and reliable information. However, looking at all these changes in the world around us in terms of security, they carry numerous types of threats to potential users such as cybercrime, cyberconflicts or cyberwar. So everything we know in the real world has moved to the virtual plane. One of the first terms used to deal with threats in computer networks was computer crimes - which referred to a tool where a crime or computer was committed.

The first incidents began to appear at the end of the 1980s and at the beginning of the 90s of the last century, when the development of the internet in the world, including Poland, took place. They evolved over the years, initially from primitive hacker attacks with malicious software aimed at individual computers, to attacks by organized crime groups using specialized software difficult to neutralize by security systems. Today's cyber attacks are thoughtful actions of experienced criminals aimed at specific goals like government institutions, large organizations or companies.

Currently, all devices that can connect to the computer network are used for cybercrime. Thanks to them, criminals direct their actions in order to obtain illegally money, goods or electronic goods such as software or data resources.

CyberSecurity of Computer Network Users and Legal Regulations

In the publication entitled Security in Cyberspace and Legal Aspects of Cyber ​​Security, security-related concepts in cyberspace that will be used in various places of this information service have been clarified. The very explanation of the concept of security is complex and there is no single definition that would describe this phenomenon clearly. By transferring this problem to the IT level, an explanation was given of concepts closely related to the dangers of computer networks used by criminals associated with those in the real world.

Due to the rapid development of ICT networks and the constant threat from cybercriminals, efforts have been made at the national, EU and international levels to prepare appropriate documents and strategies to combat cybercrime.

The content of this article and dedicated to legal regulations, the problem is indicated as the continuous emergence of new types of threats of a cross-border nature, and which are not sufficiently sanctioned legally. Although the development of cybercrime is easily noticeable, there are also threats to the most important elements of the state that constitute critical infrastructure. It should be duly protected against internal as well as external attacks. It also turns out that individual institutions and organizations should be adequately prepared to carry out offensive and defensive actions in order to protect and defend the country, what works are still underway and there are no explicit formal documents that would facilitate the fight against cyber-threats.
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