Computer Misuse

Stefan Fafinski

Publisher Willan Publishing
ISBN 978-1-84392-379-4
RRP £25.00
Reviewed by Nick Dunn
Score 7 out of 10

Computer Misuse Computer misuse and computer crime are rarely out of the headlines these days.

This book is in three sections covering: the history and nature of computer misuse; how the law can be, and is, used to deal with the issues; and suggested solutions for effective governance of computer misuse.

The first section is the one that will be of most interest to an IT professional involved in information security. It covers the history of attempts to prosecute attempts at computer misuse and illustrates how creative attempts at using the Criminal Damage Act and Fraud Act gave rise to the more specific Computer Misuse and Data Protection Acts, deliberately written to deal with computer misuse.

This provides both an interesting history of hacking and attempts to prosecute the offenders and a good practical, well researched discussion of the legal aspects of information security and hacking that is helpful for anyone studying or working in these fields.

The book then enters a discussion of computer misuse laws in relation to law and the place of law in human society. This leads to the bulk of the book being about sociology rather than technology. This may be viewed as overly theoretical and too concerned with the softer aspects by an IT professional who is looking for a guide to complying with law and regulations in the course of their normal work or for guidelines on how to implement computer misuse policies in the workplace.

If someone is interested in learning about computer crime and the laws surrounding it, they are likely to find much of interest in the first 95 pages. However, it wasn't clear to me how many people would fully appreciate the entire book or find the whole of it useful in their normal day to day work, bearing in mind that it covers subjects such as law, technology and Marx's theories about class conflict.

Further information: Willan Publishing

July 2009