User:AndrewRT/Vandalism is a crime

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  1. . Computer Misuse Act 1990 makes "unauthorised modification of compuer material" a criminal offense punishable by up to 6 months or £5000 for first offense (5 years & unlimited for 2nd)


"3(1) A person is guilty of an offense if

a) he does any act which causes the unauthorized modification of the contents of any computer; and b) at the time when he does the act he has the requisite intent and the requisite knowledge.

3(2) For the purposes of subsection 3(1)b above the requisite intent is an intent to cause a modification of the contents of any computer and by so doing

a) to impair the operation of any computer; b) to prevent or hinder access to any program or data held in any computer; or c) to impair the operation of any such program or the reliability of any such data.


3(4) For the purpose of subsection 1b above, the requisite knowledge is knowledge that any modification he intends to cause is unauthorized.

Such a modification is unauthorized if—

(a) the person whose act causes it is not himself entitled to determine whether the modification should be made; and
(b) he does not have consent to the modification from any person who is so entitled."

Vandalism is an unauthorized modification of the contents of a computer with the intent to impair the reliability of the data. If someone has been warned they know that the modification is unauthorized. Though, it depends of the knowledge spread of the administrator considering the modified data. Sometimes, the modifier may know much more, and the administrator may himself be considered as a vandalist because of obstruction, just by lack of proper education.


"at least one significant link with domestic jurisdiction must exist in the circumstances of the case for the offense to be committed...either of the following is a significant link with domestic jurisdiction (a) that the accused was in the home country concerned at the time when he did the act which caused the unauthorised modification; or (b) that the unauthorized modification took place in the home country concerned."

Wikipedia is hosted in the US and hence (b) wont apply.