CYBER CRIME – Can Locard’s Exchange Principle Be Applied To Cyber Crime?

All over the world, cyber crime is spreading like a wild fire. With several organizations and business transactions being done over the internet, the threat of cyber crime is becoming incredibly worrisome. Recent finding by government agencies point out that cyber crime has slowly pushed illicit drug trade to the kerbs by replacing it as one of the top sources of stolen funds worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

During the inception of the internet, it was perceived to hold a great potential to be a tool that could be used to develop mankind and nudge us in the right direction scientifically. It is a known fact that whatever has an advantage must surely have a disadvantage, and perhaps the potential the internet held in its infancy was greatly undermined.

Daily, news reporters report series of mind blowing cyber theft, whether depleted bank accounts, personal data theft and several other criminal activities. With an estimated 3.2 billion people using the internet as at 2015, and a rapid growing number of the populace engaging in various cyber activities, there is a need to protect the general population from the group of people engaging in the illicit act of cyber crime.



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The Locard Exchange Principle (LEP)

Dr Edmond Locard’s exchange principle or Locard’s principle as it’s popularly called was formulated by Dr. Edmond Locard (1877-1966). The principle is seen as the basic principle for forensic science. Locard speculated that every time an individual comes in contact with another person, object or place, an exchange of physical material occurs. The principle suggests that whenever a person enters into a crime scene, he deposits residues that can be traced back to him no matter how minute it may be. (Wikipedia)

When a crime takes place, the aim of the crime scene investigator is to first preserve everything present in the crime scene as though they were all evidences and then proceed to identifying, documenting and collecting evidence from the scene of the crime. With this principle and strategy of identifying and crime scene evidence, a fundamental question is being raised, “can Locard exchange principle be applied to cyber crime?” Digital detectives believe that it can. However, if a hacker gains access to a computer after tearing down its security and breaking through its firewall, the question still remains “Does the Locard principle still apply?”


Cyber Crimes Leave No Physical Evidence

While the Locard’s exchange principle is based on tracing physical evidence back to the criminal, cyber crime leaves no physical evidence that can be traced back to him. However if the computer’s access log can be accessed, there is a possibility that that there would be evidence showing that the computer was compromised and files were indeed accessed.



The Cyber Exchange Principle



Just like Locard’s principle is synonymous to physical evidence, when referring to cyber crime, a different principle applies “Cyber Exchange Principle”. Cyber exchange principle would be the forensic examination of a computer or server, which would lead to uncovering evidence of attack.


However, cyber crime scene may not be limited to one computer, so therefore the investigator would be face with the dilemma of sweeping through another computer that may be on the other side of the world.



GLOBALIZATION – A Boon Or A Curse To Mankind

Globalization is a phenomenon that has been gaining grounds for thousands of years. In more recent time, several questions are being raised concerning the issue of Globalization…what does it really mean? If we continue in the direction of globalization, what future does it promise?
Globalization has been defined by different people from different works of life as so many different things. Wikipedia defines it as the action or procedure of international integration arising from the interchange of world views, products, ideas and other aspects of culture. Some see it as the dominance of multinational corporations and the destruction of cultural identities (IMF 2002). Whichever way you choose to see globalization, whether you’re for or against it, one thing is noticeable; the rate at which it is taking place has taken an upward spike and it is not about to change course.
The effects of globalization cannot be overlooked of shoved aside at this point anymore. Globalization is more noticeable now than it has ever been. And just like everything has its pros and cons, so does globalization have its good and bad. Everything is changing, the common man on the street can see himself shrinking while big corporations seems to be getting bigger and bigger. Globalization comes in many forms and the most visible form that pops up on the mind of everyone when the word globalization is mentioned is technology.


Technological Revolution