[Dshield] RE: Legality of portscanning/Using open services/spammingconversation

Jon R. Kibler Jon.Kibler at aset.com
Mon Oct 21 22:22:19 GMT 2002


Here is how it was explained to me:

If someone mails you a pipe bomb, and when you open the package it explodes killing you, then the state which you were in when you got killed has jurisdiction over your death, even though the package may have been mailed from another state.

The same principle applies to most computer crime acts, including interstate acts; just because it is an interstate act, it does not mean that a state cannot claim jurisdiction. 

That said, the Feds can always usurp a state's claim of jurisdiction for any interstate crime that is also a Federal offense. The Feds can also explicitly allow acts that states cannot override (such as the Internet tax issue) and they can claim that all occurrences of any act is always a Federal offense, but anything not explicitly addressed by the Feds is fair game for states to legislate.

Or so I have been told by several lawyers.

Hope this helps!

Jon Kibler

David Sentelle wrote:
> What I don't understand is how states can make laws pertaining to port scanning, using open services (port 135), and spamming.  Even when sending an email to another person in my state, it usually gets routed through a network that leaves the state.  Isn't this therefore an interstate crime?
> ----------------------------------------
> David Sentelle
> Network Operations Specialist
> Commerce National Bank
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