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Course Code: CRIM 3365
Faculty: Humanities & Social Sciences
Department: Criminology
Credits: 3.0
Semester: 15
Learning Format: Lecture, Seminar
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

This course explores technical, legal, and social issues related to cybercrime. Cybercrime is a broad term that includes offences where a computer may be the target, crimes where a computer may be a tool used in the commission of an existing offence, and crimes where a computer may play a subsidiary role such as offering evidence for the commission of an offence. The operation of computers and the internet will be discussed. The origins and extent of cybercrime, responses from legal systems to cyber-criminals, and the social impact of cybercrimes will be addressed. Various types of cybercrimes, cyber-criminals, as well as the motivations and methods involved in cyber-offences will be explored. The etiology of cybercrimes will be analyzed from cultural, subcultural, sociological, and opportunity perspectives. International issues and jurisdictional challenges will be critically examined.

Course Content

1. Computer and internet basics:

  • Computer hardware and software
  • Operation of the Internet
    • Infrastructure and usage

2. The legal composition of cybercrime:

  • Defining cybercrime
  • Classifying cyber offences
    • Computer offences
    • Computer-facilitated offences
    • Computer-supported offences
  • Prevalence and frequency of cybercrimes
    • Globally
    • Canada

3. Methods and techniques used in the commission of offences:

  • Malicious software
    • Viruses
    • Worms
    • Trojan horses
    • Spyware, adware, and scareware
  • Hacking
    • Classification of hackers
    • Techniques used by hackers
  • Spamming, phishing, and skimming
  • Botnets
  • Distributed denial of service attacks

4. Computer offences:

  • Illegal access
  • Illegal interception
  • Data and system interference
  • Misuse of devices

5. Content-related offences:

  • Child pornography

6. Offences against the person:

  • Cyberstalking
  • Grooming
  • Voyeurism
  • Cyberbullying

7. Fraud and financial crimes:

  • Fraud
  • Identity theft
  • Money laundering
  • Copyright infringement
    • Software piracy

8. Theoretical explanations for cybercrimes:

  • Cultural and subcultural
  • Sociological
  • Opportunity

9. International issues:

  • Cyber-terrorism
  • Cyber-warfare
  • Human trafficking

10. Jurisdictional issues:

  • Canadian laws and jurisdiction
  • Global nature of cybercrimes and jurisdictional issues
    • Prescriptive jurisdiction
    • Adjudicative jurisdiction
    • Enforcement jurisdiction
  • Canadian laws and jurisdiction

Methods of Instruction

This course will employ a variety of instructional methods to accomplish its objectives, including some of the following:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • audio visual material
  • small group discussions
  • research projects and research papers

Means of Assessment

Evaluation will be based on course objectives and be carried out in accordance with Douglas College policy. The instructor will provide a written course outline with specific evaluation criteria at the beginning of the semester.  Evaluation will be based on some of the following:

  1. Participation
  2. Essay
  3. Oral presentation
  4. Exams and quizzes

An example of one possible evaluation scheme would be:



Midterm Exam 1


Midterm Exam 2




Oral Presentation


Final Quiz




Learning Outcomes

At the conclusion of this course, successful students will be able to: 

  1. Illustrate the operation of computers and the internet.
  2. Identify various classifications of cybercrimes and cyber-criminals.
  3. Describe the prevalence of cybercrimes in Canada and other nations.
  4. Identify the methods and techniques commonly used by cyber-criminals.
  5. Distinguish between various types of cybercrimes with respect to the motivations and methods of operation of offenders, the types of victims or targets, and the spatial, temporal, and legal domains in which they are carried out.
  6. Analyse international issues such as cyber-terrorism, cyber-warfare, and human trafficking.
  7. Examine the ability of existing criminological theories to explain cybercrime.
  8. Analyse existing Canadian cybercrime legislation and the dynamic nature of the ways cybercrimes are documented in legislation.
  9. Explain jurisdictional challenges when responding to cybercrime.

course prerequisites

CRIM 1150


Courses listed here must be completed either prior to or simultaneously with this course:

  • No corequisite courses


Courses listed here are equivalent to this course and cannot be taken for further credit:

  • No equivalency courses

curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.