Computer misuse act

As computers became more and more important in society, it became obvious that people would misuse computers for various reasons. such as identity theft ,Data theft ,to cripple businesses or just to be a pain.

These offences are listed under three categories, each with different consequences.

Unauthorised access to computer material.

A person is guilty of an offence if


  • They cause a computer to perform any function with intent to secure access to any program or data held in any computer, or to enable such access to be secured.
The intent a person has to commit an offence under this section isn't directed at.



  • any particular program or data of any particular kind.
  • a program or data held in any particular computer.
A person found guilty of the offence can.

  • Be imprisoned for up to 24 months (depending on the country where the crime was committed) or a fine.
All of the above punishments are more severe with imprisonment of up to five years being a consequence if this access was intended to commit even more crimes such as theft or fraud.

Unauthorised acts with intent to impair or with reckless as to impairing

.