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All individuals using computing facilities are notified that the Illinois Computer Crime Prevention Law (Illinois Revised Statutes, Chapter 38, Article 16D) makes unauthorized computer use a criminal offense.

There are three offense categories defined by the law.

  1. Computer Tampering. An individual may be prosecuted for this offense when access is gained to a computer, a program, or data, without permission from the owner. Unauthorized access, by itself, is a misdemeanor. Obtaining data or services is a misdemeanor for the first offense and a felony for subsequent offenses. Altering, damaging, destroying, or removing a computer, a program, or data, always is a felony. (These latter offenses include the use or attempted use of what commonly is referred to as a "computer virus.")
  2. Aggravated Computer Tampering. This offense occurs when Computer Tampering has the intended effect of: (a) disruption of or interference with vital services or operations of State or local government or a public utility, or (b) creating a strong probability of death or great bodily harm to other individuals. These offenses are punishable as felonies.
  3. Computer Fraud. This offense occurs when access to or use of a computer, program or data is gained as part of a scheme to deceive or defraud. This includes the use of a computer to gain control over money, services or property. In addition to its ordinary meaning, "property" in this context includes: electronic impulses, electronically produced data, confidential or copyrighted material, billing information, and software in any form. These offenses are punishable as felonies.
A copy of the complete text of the Computer Crime Prevention Law is available for examination in the Data Processing and Computer Center or in the Office of the General Counsel.
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