In the early 1990s, professionals began to question how to address offender computer use while on supervision, but in the past ten years, tools emerged that were specifically developed for triage and field forensics. As these were rapidly embraced, it was still unclear what professionals could look for, how to look for it, and how to interpret what they found. This unique book resolves those issues. The book provides a clear outline of what can and should be done regarding the management of offender computer use. Not only does the text help community corrections professionals understand how to monitor computer use, but it helps realize how information gained during monitoring can assist in overall case management. The book takes the reader through all the paces of managing offender cyber-risk and is meant specifically for pretrial, probation, parole, and community sanction officers. The chapters are organized by major areas, such as community corrections and cyberspace, understanding the options, condition legality, operational legality, accessing cyber-risk, computer education, principles of effective computer monitoring, search and seizure, deploying monitoring software, and online investigations. Additionally, numerous appendices provide a wealth of information regarding model forms, questionnaires, and worksheets. This book moves the reader toward a more informed use of the technology that is now readily available to effectively manage offenders’ digital behavior.
List of Illustrations
1. DOES COMMUNITY CORRECTIONS COVER CYBERSPACE?
Digital Age’s Advent
2. UNDERSTANDING THE OPTIONS
Total Computer Ban
Monitoring, Searching, and Other Techniques
Home Confinement/Location Monitoring
Field and Collateral Contacts
Interviewing and Records Examination
3. CONDITION LEGALITY
First Amendment (U.S. Const. Amend. I)
Fourth Amendment (U.S. Const. Amend. IV)
Fifth Amendment (U.S. Const. Amend. V)
Sixth Amendment (U.S. Const. Amend. VI)
Eight Amendment (U.S. Const. Amend. VIII)
Fourteenth Amendment (U.S. Const. Amend. XIV)
U.S. v. Paul, 274 F.3d 155 (5th Cir. 2001)
U.S. v. Lifshitz, 369 F.3d 173, 175, 190-92 (2d Cir.2004)
U.S. v. Zinn, 321 F.3d 1084 (11th Cir. 2003)
U.S. v. Sales, 476 F.3d 732 (9th Cir. 2007)
U.S. v. Voelker, 489 F.3d 139, 154 (3d Cir.2007)
U.S. v. Love, 593 F. 3d 1 (DC Cir. 2010)
U.S. v. Tome, 611 F. 3d 1371 (11th Cir. 2010)
In Re Hudson, (49 Cal. Rptr. 3d 74 - Cal: Court of
Appeals, 1st Appellate Dist., 1st Div. 20, 2006
State of New Hampshire vs. Steven Merrill, Case No.
People v. TR, (Cal: Court of Appeals, 4th Appellate Dist.,
1st Div. 2010)
4. OPERATIONAL LEGALITY
Search Case Law
U.S. v. Tucker, 305 F. 3d 1193, (10th Cir. 2002)
U.S. v. Lifshitz, 369 F.3d 173, 175, 190-92 (2d Cir.2004)
U.S. v. Yuknavich, 419 F. 3d 1302, (11th Cir. 2005)
U.S. v. Herndon, 501 F. 3d 683 (6th Cir. 2007)
The Stored Communications Act, 18 U.S.C. §§ 2701-2712
The Wiretap Statute (TITLE III) 18 U.S.C. §§ 2510-2522
The Privacy Protection Act (“PPA”), 42 U.S.C. § 2000aa
Other Legal Concerns
Fifth Amendment Issues
Use of WiFi Detectors
Use of Ultraviolet Light
5. ACCESSING CYBER-RISK
Computers and Criminal Behavior
Criminal Computer Use
Prior Criminal Behavior
Equipment and ISP
Risk Level and Monitoring
6. A “BIT” OF COMPUTER EDUCATION
Two Basic Concerns
Input and Output Devices
Processing, Communication, and Electrical Supply
7. PRINCIPLES OF EFFECTIVE COMPUTER
Principle 1: Have a Plan
Principle 2: Limit Access
Principle 3: Actively Look for Circumvention
Principle 4: Utilize A Resilient Method
Principle 5: Reliability and Accuracy
Principle 6: Utilize Alerts
Principle 7: Review Notifications/Data
Principle 8: Accessibility
Principle 9: Avoid Negative Impact on Others
Principle 10: Monitoring Can Be Compromised
8. SEARCH AND SEIZURE
Boot CD/DVD Software
Digital Evidence and Forensic Toolkit (DEFT)
Advanced Computer Examination Support for Law
Remote Examination Agents (REA)
Forensic Software and Hardware
Mobile Phone and Device Searches and Seizures
9. DEPLOYING MONITORING SOFTWARE
Evolution of Monitoring Software
Consumer Monitoring Software
The Company Approach
Internet Probation and Parole Control (IPPC)
Monitoring Other Systems
10. ONLINE INVESTIGATIONS
A. Computer Restriction and Monitoring Program
B. Computer Usage Questionnaire
C. Hardware/Software Restrictions
D. Computer Monitoring Release
E. Computer Usage Update Questionnaire
F. Authorization to Search/Seize Computer Equipment/
G. Knoppix Evidence Inventory Worksheet
H. Preview In Windows
I. Property Receipt
Art Bowker has over 28 years experience in law enforcement and corrections and is the author of book,The Cybercrime Handbook for Community Corrections: Managing Offender Risk in the 21st Century, (Charles C. Thomas, Publisher, LTD, March 20, 2012). The book is the first and only text specifically for pretrial, probation, and parole officers on supervising defendants/offenders' computer and Internet use.
Judges are frequently faced with complex sentencing and release decisions. Should they release a defendant pending the final outcome of a criminal proceeding? If so, should the person be supervised with special prerelease conditions? After a guilty finding, do they place an individual on probation or should they sentence him or her to prison and for how long? What special conditions should be imposed while the offender is on probation or after his or her release from custody? Parole authorities frequently confront the same challenging release decisions and consideration of special supervision conditions.
The options can be even more complex when technological conditions (computer and/or Internet monitoring/restrictions) are warranted to manage risk. What impact will the conditions have on the individuals and/or their families? How effective can these conditions be enforced and what will the agency impact be on those charged with insuring their compliance? What are the technological challenges associated with these special conditions? What are the pros and cons associated with each technique for managing cyber-risk? Finally, will the imposition of special conditions withstand legal scrutiny? Understanding all of these issues will help mitigate possible legal challenges to the impo- sition of technological conditions.
Review excerpt from www.correctionsone.com
The Cybercrime Handbook for Community Corrections: Managing Offender Risk in the 21st Century seeks to provide the field with critical guidance on the importance of monitoring offender computer activity, the immense value of the information that can be obtained as a result and specific resources necessary for agencies to develop a cyber supervision capability. The author, Art Bowker, is a seasoned criminal justice professional with over 26 years of experience. He is a past president of the High Technology Crime Investigation Association. As a probation
officer he was one of the pioneers in the area of utilizing computer investigative techniques in support of the offender
The Cybercrime Handbook is written in layman’s terms and can be easily digested by everyone from line officers to agency executives. Bowker lays out the foundation that effective supervision includes monitoring offender computer use and that the required skills and tools to perform this function are readily available. He then leads the reader through the subsequent steps necessary to turn the requirement into an action plan, inserting tips and best practices gathered from his vast knowledge and operational experience along the way.
As Bowker notes, the field of community corrections has been relatively slow to embrace computer management
techniques as part of an offender supervision strategy. This is likely due to a number of factors including budgetary
constraints, concerns about inadequate officer skill level, the lack of appropriate tools or simply a misguided notion that what happens online is just not important. Regardless of the reasons, the author correctly asserts that in the 21st century agencies can no longer ignore what offenders are doing in cyberspace. Most, if not all, of the historic obstacles have been removed. Computer search and monitoring products, many free or lowcost, have been developed specifically for community corrections. Training on these tools and investigative techniques is readily available and the technical skills required to effectively apply them are well within the reach of any supervision officer.
The remaining obstacle seems to be the perception about the value of computer monitoring, however the case
is strongly made by Jim Tanner in the book’s forward that “a computer is a window into the mind of the offender”. Indeed, a search of a computer (or smart-phone, gaming system, or other computer device) would quickly reveal what the user’s interests are, who they communicate with, how they spend their time and what their current or future plans might entail. As the author points out, computer monitoring is not just for sex offenders. Gangs, for instance, technology update extensively use computers to further criminal activity and digital evidence is or can be part of virtually every criminal investigation. Ensuring that persons under supervision are not continuing their criminal activities is only one benefit of computer monitoring. Understanding offender computer activity can also provide the supervising officer with
insight into risk factors that may lead to undesirable outcomes. The take-away is that computers are a major part of life
today and computer monitoring can yield a great deal of important intelligence about offenders that is not likely to be easily obtained in any other man
With the case for monitoring effectively established, the author goes on to provide readers with essential material to help make better informed decisions about how to implement a cyber-supervision capability in their jurisdiction.
One of the primary issues dealt with is the legal authority to conduct computer searches and/or monitoring. A discussion
of the constitutional issues at play, statutes and case law provides readers with context for how conditions of supervision might be tailored based on individual case needs. A chapter on operational legality walks the reader through the process of conducting computer searches and/or monitoring with an eye towards avoiding potential legal pitfalls. Guidance is provided for dealing with tricky, realworld situations such as how to monitor a computer that an to, but is owned by his employer or used by other family members in the same residence.offender has access.
The author correctly dedicates a fair amount of discussion to the topic of assessing an offender’s cyber-risk. As Bowker notes, risk assessment is a routine activity for supervision officers however the incorporation of cyber-risk is relatively new ground. Factors such as an offender’s technical knowledge and whether a computer was used in the current criminal case should be considered. In addition, an offender’s Internet behavior, particularly in sex offender cases, should be examined.
A very basic overview of computers and their operations is offered to make readers more comfortable with the subject and to reinforce the concept that computer monitoring is a skill set well within their reach. While the chapter provides
information that may be rudimentary for some, I believe its inclusion to be essential, particularly for officers who might feel overwhelmed by the prospect of monitoring their offenders’ computers.
Bowker offers his principles of effective computer monitoring which provides excellent fodder for agency managers to
consider as they develop their strategies. One of the key take-aways is that, like all technologies, computer monitoring can be circumvented by a motivated offender. Agencies need to have realistic expectations, understand the technology’s limitations and develop approaches to bridge these gaps.
author describes the issues related to conducting computer previews or forensic examinations in the field. Bowker
provides a practical review of several commonly available tools that can be used to conduct point in time searches of
an offender’s computer. Features, basic functionality, and relative pros and cons of each product are discussed. In addition to the technology, issues such as the importance of having a plan of action for the search, officer safety tips and evidence storage and disposal are discussed. A minor criticism is that the author dedicates little more than one page to mobile phone search and seizure. While the challenges associated with forensics of phones are
noted, more information on the tools available and their relative benefits would have been helpful.
As opposed to point in time searches, several vendors provide the option of continuously monitoring an offender’s
computer. Bowker discusses the four basic approaches to continuous monitoring software and provides very useful data on the various products currently available, their features and license costs.
The final chapter of the book focuses on online investigations and social networking. Offenders are posting a wealth of information online that can be fairly easily accessed by supervision officers. Supervision officers have used fairly basic techniques to detect violations, identify inappropriate associations and locate absconders. A number of tips to get started and issues to consider are provided.
The book’s appendix contains a variety of computer management forms which I found to be particularly useful. Included
is a computer restriction and monitoring agreement form which outlines the general do’s and don’ts for the offender; a
computer usage questionnaire which can be used to gather information about such things as the computers, networks and storage devices the offender has access to, information about social networking site profiles and his/her passwords; authorization to search/seize computer equipment/electronic data; computer preview result forms and an of a property receipt. The forms can easily be replicated and modified for any jurisdiction’s use – no need to reinvent the
Overall, Bowker has done an excellent job of addressing the myriad issues related to managing offender computer use. The Cybercrime Handbook for Community Corrections is a great resource for supervision officers interested in getting
up to speed on this topic. That said, as the author acknowledges, this book is merely a beginning point. Technology will
continue to evolve and will be used (and misused) in ways we can only begin to imagine. As this happens new risks and opportunities will emerge. Supervision officers must prepare themselves now so that they will be better able to anticipate and address these inevitable changes.