HB1215 Changes certain computer crimes and creates and revises certain crimes.
Sponsor: Smith, Philip (11) Effective Date:00/00/0000
CoSponsor: Gaw, Steve (22) LR Number: 3056S.07C
Last Action: COMMITTEE: SENATE STATE BUDGET CONTROL
05/07/2000 - Reported do pass (S)
SCS HS HCS HB 1215 & 1240
Next Hearing:Hearing not scheduled
Calendar:Bill currently not on calendar
ACTIONS HEARINGS CALENDAR
BILL SUMMARIES BILL TEXT
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Available Bill Summaries for HB1215 Copyright(c)
* Senate Committee Substitute * Perfected * Committee * Introduced

Available Bill Text for HB1215
* Senate Committee Substitute * Perfected * Committee * Introduced *

BILL SUMMARIES

PERFECTED

HS HCS HB 1215 & 1240 -- COMPUTER CRIME (Smith)

This substitute makes changes to provisions concerning computer
crimes.  The substitute:

(1)  Allows a court to award a plaintiff expenses incurred to
block future access by the perpetrators of computer invasion of
privacy or unlawful computer communications (Section 537.525,
RSMo);

(2)  Establishes the jurisdiction and venue for crimes committed
through use of a computer as any county in which:  (a)  any act
was performed in furtherance of the crime; (b)  the accused had
control of materials or objects used in furtherance of the
crime; (c)  computers or computer equipment used in furtherance
of the crime are located; or (d)  access to a computer or
computer network was made (Section 541.033);

(3)  Establishes the jurisdiction and venue for the prosecution
of fraudulent use of a credit device so as to include the county
where the defendant or a victim resides, or any county from
which property was obtained (Section 541.155);

(4)  Allows law enforcement to obtain warrants to search for and
seize child pornography for other than evidentiary purposes
without first holding an adversarial hearing to determine
whether the matter is obscene (Section 542.281);

(5)  Extends the statute of limitations for computer crimes to
one year after discovery of the offense, but not more than 3
years after the offense occurs (Section 556.036);

(6)  Expands the harassment statute to include electronic and
in-person communications and increases the penalty for
communicating a threat to commit a felony from a class A
misdemeanor to a class D felony (Section 565.090);

(7)  Clarifies that the offense of aggravated stalking includes
credible threats made by electronic communications, in person,
or by posted messages publicly accessible via a computer
(Section 565.225);

(8)  Amends the crime of invasion of privacy, splitting it into
first and second degree.  A person commits the crime in the
first degree when he or she distributes or allows another to
view nude photographs of a person without the person's consent.
It is a class C felony.  Photographing or otherwise recording
such images without consent is now invasion of privacy in the
second degree, and remains a class A misdemeanor (Sections
565.252, 565.253);

(9)  Requires computer providers, installers or repair persons,
and Internet service providers to report to law enforcement if
they know of or see images depicting child pornography.
Currently, this duty is imposed only on film and print
processors.  The substitute also raises the age of children that
the statute applies to from 17 to 18 (Section 568.110);

(10)  Expands the crime of causing a catastrophe to include the
sending of a computer virus or altering a computer program that
controls a utility or public service (Section 569.070);

(11)  Creates the crime of theft by Internet.  Selling stolen
property over the Internet or buying property over the Internet
with a stolen or fictitious credit card or checking account is a
class C felony, regardless of the value of the stolen property
(Section 570.083);

(12)  Amends the definitions section of the child pornography
laws to include the creation and sending of child pornography
via computers (Section 573.010);

(13)  Repeals promoting child pornography in the second degree,
makes promoting child pornography a class A felony, and amends
the statute so as to include the transfer of such images
electronically (Sections 573.025, 573.035);

(14)  Amends the crime of possession of child pornography,
splitting it into first and second degree.  Possessing or
controlling 1,000 or more items of child pornography is a class
C felony for the first offense and a class B felony for
subsequent offenses (Section 573.036).  Possessing or
controlling less than 1,000 items of child pornography is a
class D felony for the first offense and a class C felony for
subsequent offenses (Section 573.037).

(15)  Creates the crime of furnishing child pornography to a
minor.  The first offense is a class D felony and any subsequent
offense is a class C felony (Section 573.045);

(16)  Renumbers the provisions governing computer tampering
(Sections 569.093-569.099 become Sections 578.500-578.509);

(17)  Amends the crime of tampering with computer data by
repealing the prohibition on accessing a computer and
intentionally examining information about another person.  The
substitute also increases the penalty from a class D to a class
C felony and increases the necessary value of property involved
from $150 to $500 (Section 578.503);

(18)  Amends the crime of tampering with computer equipment by
increasing the penalty from a class D to a class C felony and
increases the necessary value of property involved from $150 to
$500 (Section 578.506);

(19)  Increases the penalty for tampering with computer users
from a class D to a class C felony and increases the necessary
value of the property involved from $150 to $500 (Section
578.509);

(20)  Creates the crime of computer invasion of privacy when a
person uses a computer or computer network, program, software,
or system to intentionally examine, without authorization,
personal or financial information of another.  The crime is a
class D felony.  If committed to obtain property worth $500 or
more, it is a class C felony (Section 578.512);

(21)  Creates the crime of unlawful computerized
communications.  The crime is a class D felony when a person
uses a computer to communicate a threat to commit any felony or
communicates repeatedly after receiving notice from the receiver
to stop.  It is a class A misdemeanor to communicate with
coarse, offensive language or to make an anonymous communication
(Section 578.515);

(22)  Grants prosecuting attorneys and the Attorney General
concurrent jurisdiction to bring actions under the new computer
crimes statutes and for any case involving computers in this
state (Sections 578.518, 578.521);

(23)  Requires that school districts, technical and vocational
schools, and libraries that provide the public and students
access to computers, on or before July 1, 2002:  (a)  use
software designed to prevent minors from accessing pornographic
material; or (b)  purchase Internet services from a provider
that filters services to limit minors' access to pornographic
material; or (c)  develop a written computer use policy to
prevent minors from accessing such material (Section 578.524);
and

(24)  Creates the crime of indecent solicitation of a child, a
class D felony.  The crime is committed when a person at least
17 years old solicits or arranges sexual acts with a child less
than 13 years old (Section 568.085).

FISCAL NOTE:  Estimated Cost to General Revenue Fund exceeds
$123,520 in FY 2001, exceeds $124,745 in FY 2002, and exceeds
$125,356 in FY 2003.  Cost to Merchandising Practices Fund of
$71,709 in FY 2001, $88,304 in FY 2002, and $90,618 in FY 2003.


COMMITTEE

HCS HB 1215 & 1240 -- COMPUTER CRIME

SPONSOR:  Smith

COMMITTEE ACTION:  Voted "do pass" by the Committee on Civil and
Administrative Law by a vote of 17 to 0.

This substitute makes changes to provisions concerning computer
crimes.  The substitute:

(1)  Allows a court to award a plaintiff expenses incurred to
block future access by the perpetrators of computer invasion of
privacy or unlawful computer communications (Section 537.525,
RSMo);

(2)  Establishes the jurisdiction and venue for crimes committed
through use of a computer as any county in which:  (a)  any act
was performed in furtherance of the crime; (b)  the accused had
control of materials or objects used in furtherance of the
crime; (c)  computers or computer equipment used in furtherance
of the crime are located; (d)  the victim or defendant resides;
(e)  any property fraudulently obtained was located; or (f)
access to a computer or computer network was made (Section
541.033);

(3)  Allows law enforcement to obtain warrants to search for and
seize child pornography, for other than evidentiary purposes,
without first holding an adversarial hearing to determine
whether the matter is obscene (Section 542.281);

(4)  Extends the statute of limitations for computer crimes to
one year after discovery of the offense, but not more than 3
years after the offense occurs (Section 556.036);

(5)  Expands the harassment statute to include electronic and
in-person communications, and increases the penalty for
communicating a threat to commit a felony from a class A
misdemeanor to a class D felony (Section 565.090);

(6)  Clarifies that the offense of aggravated stalking includes
credible threats made by electronic communications, in person,
or by posted messages publicly accessible via a computer
(Section 565.225);

(7)  Amends the crime of invasion of privacy, splitting it into
first and second degree.  A person commits the crime in the
first degree, a class C felony, when he or she distributes or
makes accessible by computer nude photographs or images made
without the subject's consent.  Photographing or otherwise
recording such images, already is a class A misdemeanor, will be
invasion of privacy in the second degree (Sections 565.252,
565.253);

(8)  Requires computer providers, installers or repair persons,
and Internet service providers to report to law enforcement if
they know of or see images depicting child pornography.
Currently, this duty is imposed only on film and print
processors.  The substitute also raises the age of children that
the statute applies to from under 17 to under 18 (Section
568.110);

(9)  Expands the crime of causing catastrophe to include the
sending of a computer virus and altering a computer program that
controls a utility or public service (Section 569.070);

(10)  Amends the definitions section of the child pornography
laws to include the creation and sending of child pornography
via computers (Section 573.010).  The substitute also makes
promoting child pornography a Class A felony and amends the
statute so as to include the transfer of such images
electronically (Section 573.025);

(11)  Amends the crime of possession of child pornography,
splitting it into first and second degree.  Possessing or
controlling 1,000 or more items of child pornography is a class
C felony for the first offense and a class B felony for
subsequent offenses (Section 573.036).  Possessing or
controlling less than 1,000 items of child pornography is a
class D felony for the first offense and a class C felony for
subsequent offenses (Section 573.037).

(12)  Creates the crime of furnishing child pornography to a
minor.  The first offense is a class D felony and any subsequent
offense is a class C felony (Section 573.045);

(13)  Renumbers the provisions governing computer tampering
(Section 569.093-569.099 moves to 578.500-578.509.);

(14)  Amends the crime of tampering with computer data by
repealing the prohibition on accessing a computer and
intentionally examining information about another person.  The
substitute also increases the penalty from a class D to a class
C felony, and increases the necessary value of property involved
from $150 to $500 (Section 578.503);

(15)  Amends the crime of tampering with computer equipment by
increasing the penalty from a class D to a class C felony, and
increases the necessary value of property involved from $150 to
$500 (Section 578.506);

(16)  Increases the penalty for tampering with computer users
from a class D to a class C felony, and increases the necessary
value of the property involved from $150 to $500 (Section
578.509);

(17)  Creates the crime of computer invasion of privacy when a
person uses a computer or computer network, program, software,
or system to intentionally examine, without authorization,
personal or financial information of another.  The crime is a
class D felony.  If committed to obtain property worth $500 or
more, it is a class C felony (Section 578.512);

(18)  Creates the crime of unlawful computerized
communications.  The crime is a class D felony when a person
uses a computer to communicate a threat to commit any felony or
communicates repeatedly after receiving notice from the receiver
to stop.  It is a class A misdemeanor to communicate with
coarse, offensive language or to make an anonymous communication
(Section 578.515);

(19)  Grants prosecuting attorneys and the Attorney General
concurrent jurisdiction to bring actions under the new computer
crimes statutes, and for any case involving computers in this
state (Sections 578.518, 578.521);

(20)  Requires that school districts, technical and vocational
schools, and libraries that provide the public and students
access to computers, on or before July 1, 2002, (a)  use
software designed to prevent minors from accessing pornographic
material; (b)  purchase Internet services from a provider that
filters services to limit minors' access to pornographic
material; or (c)  develop a written computer use policy to
prevent minors from accessing such material (Section 578.524);
and

(21)  Creates the crime of indecent solicitation of a child, a
class D felony.  The crime is committed when a person at least
17 years old solicits or arranges sexual acts with a child less
than 13 years old (Section 568.085).

FISCAL NOTE:  Estimated Cost to General Revenue Fund exceeds
$405,895 in FY 2001, exceeds $419,326 in FY 2002, and exceeds
$427,610 in FY 2003.

PROPONENTS:  Supporters say that computers are now the primary
tool of many criminals in our high-tech society.  The Internet
is accessible to more than two million Missourians, so it is now
being used to carry out a wide variety of crimes.  The law needs
to catch up to the criminals.  The bill includes provisions
enabling prosecutors to pursue pedophiles, who use the Internet
to find their potential victims, computer hackers, who wreak
havoc through spreading computer viruses, and computer fraud.
The bill amends crimes such as stalking and harassment so as to
include communications made via computer.  Supporters of HB 1240
say that creating the crime of indecent solicitation of a child
allows prosecutors to pursue a pedophile before the pedophile
can victimize the child.

Testifying for the bill were Representatives Smith and May
(108); Office of the Attorney General; Missouri Family Network;
Missouri Police Chiefs Association; American Association of
Retired Persons; Missouri Retailers Association; and Missouri
Grocers Association.

OPPONENTS:  Those who oppose the bill say that libraries will
not be able to fully comply with the bill, because the software
currently available to filter out pornography from the Internet
is inadequate.  Current software lets some pornography through
and filters out some protected speech.  Opponents also say that
the bill results in prior restraint of speech in violation of
the First Amendment.

Testifying against the bill were Missouri Library Association;
American Civil Liberties Union; and Office of the Secretary of
State.

Richard Smreker, Legislative Analyst


INTRODUCED

HB 1215 -- Computer Crime

Co-Sponsors:  Smith, Gaw, Britt, Relford, Berkowitz, Kennedy

This bill makes changes to provisions concerning computer
crimes.  The bill:

(1)  Amends the current statute providing civil remedies for
victims of computer crime by adding owners or lessees of
computers or computer equipment to those who may utilize the
statute.  Currently, only owners or lessees of computer systems,
networks, programs, or services may use the statute.  The bill
also amends the current statute to allow for the recovery of
expenses incurred to block future access by the perpetrators of
computer invasion of privacy or unlawful computer communications
(Section 537.525, RSMo);

(2)  Establishes the jurisdiction and venue for crimes committed
through use of a computer as any county in which any act was
performed in furtherance of the crime, or any county in which
the accused had control of materials or objects used in
furtherance of the crime, or any county in which computers or
computer equipment used in furtherance of the crime are located,
or any county from which, in which, or through which access to a
computer or computer network was made (Section 541.033);

(3)  Amends current law to allow law enforcement to obtain
warrants to search for and seize child pornography for other
than evidentiary purposes without first holding an adversarial
hearing to determine whether the matter is obscene (Section
542.281);

(4)  Extends the statute of limitations for computer crimes to
one year after discovery of the offense, but not more than 3
years after the offense occurs (Section 556.036);

(5)  Expands the harassment statute to include electronic and
in-person communications, and increases the penalty for
communicating a threat to commit a felony from a class A
misdemeanor to a class D felony (Section 565.090);

(6) Clarifies that the offense of aggravated stalking includes
credible threats made by electronic communications, in person,
or by posted messages publicly accessible via a computer
(Section 565.225);

(7)  Creates the class C felony crime of invasion of privacy in
the first degree when nude photographs or images made without
the subject's consent are distributed or made accessible by
computer.  The bill amends the current invasion of privacy
statute, which does not require the distribution or transmission
of images, to make it a crime in the second degree (Section
565.253);

(8)  Extends the duty to computer providers, installers or
repair persons, and Internet service providers to report to law
enforcement if they know of or see images depicting child
pornography.  Currently, this duty is only imposed on film and
print processors.  The bill also raises the age of children that
the statute applies to from 17 to 18 (Section 568.110);

(9)  Expands the crime of causing catastrophe to include the
sending of a computer virus and altering a computer program that
controls a public service (Section 569.070);

(10)  Amends the definitions section of the child pornography
laws to include the creation and sending of child pornography
via computers (Section 573.010).  The bill also amends the crime
of promoting child pornography in the first and second degree to
include the creation of child pornography with the intent to
electronically transfer it (Sections 573.025, 573.035);

(11)  Creates the crime of possession of child pornography in
the first degree for possessing or controlling 1,000 or more
items of child pornography, which is a class C felony for the
first offense and class B felony for the second and subsequent
offenses (Section 573.036).  The bill amends the current
possession of child pornography statute to make it a second
degree crime for possessing or controlling less than 1,000 items
of child pornography, which is a class D felony for the first
offense and a class C felony for the second and subsequent
offenses (Section 573.037).  The bill also creates the crime of
furnishing child pornography to a minor, which is a class D
felony for the first offense, and a class C felony for the
second and subsequent offense (Section 573.045);

(12)  Amends the evidentiary statute to include newly created
first and second degree possession of child pornography and
furnishing child pornography to a minor (Section 573.050);

(13)  Repeals current computer crime statutes (Sections 569.093--
569.099) and replaces them with additional crimes.  The bill
amends the definitions sections of current computer crime
statutes by updating and expanding existing definitions, and
adding 5 more terms (Section 578.500);

(14)  Amends the crime of tampering with computer data by
deleting the act of accessing a computer and intentionally
examining information about another person as a violation of the
statute.  The bill also increases the penalty from a class D to
a class C felony, and increases the value of property from $150
to $500 (Section 578.503);

(15)  Amends the crime of tampering with computer equipment by
increasing the penalty from a class D to a class C felony, and
increases the value of property from $150 to $500 (Section
578.506);

(16)  Amends the crime of tampering with computer users by
increasing the penalty from a class D to a class C felony, and
increases the value of property from $150 to $500 (Section
578.509);

(17)  Creates the crime of computer invasion of privacy when a
person uses a computer or computer network, program, software,
or system to intentionally examine without authority personal or
financial information of another.  The penalty is a class D
felony unless the crime is committed to obtain property worth
$500 or more, which is a class C felony (Section 578.512);

(18)  Creates the crime of unlawful computerized communications
when a person, for purposes of frightening, intimidating,
threatening or disturbing another, communicates by computer: a
threat to commit any felony, which is a class D felony; a
communication with coarse, offensive language, which is a class
A misdemeanor; an anonymous communication, which is a class A
misdemeanor; or communications repeatedly after receiving notice
from the receiver to stop, which is a class D felony (Section
578.515);

(19)  Gives prosecuting attorneys and the Attorney General
concurrent jurisdiction to bring actions under the new computer
crimes statutes, and for any case involving computers in this
state (Sections 578.518, 578.521); and

(20)  Requires that school districts, technical and vocational
schools, and libraries that provide computers accessible to
students or the public, on or before July 1, 2002, either use
software designed to prevent minors from accessing pornographic
material or purchase Internet services from a provider that
filters services to limit minors' access to pornographic
material (Section 578.524).


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