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Article 156 - NY Penal Law

OFFENSES INVOLVING COMPUTERS; DEFINITION OF TERMS

Section Offense Class
156.00 Offenses involving computers; definition of terms.  
156.05 Unauthorized use of a computer. A MISD
156.10 Computer trespass. E FELONY
156.20 Computer tampering in the fourth degree. A MISD
156.25 Computer tampering in the third degree. E FELONY
156.26 Computer tampering in the second degree. D FELONY
156.27 Computer tampering in the first degree. C FELONY
156.29 Unlawful duplication of computer related material in the second degree. B MISD
156.30 Unlawful duplication of computer related material in the first degree. E FELONY
156.35 Criminal possession of computer related material. E FELONY
156.40 Operating an unlawful electronic sweepstakes. E FELONY
156.50 Offenses involving computers; defenses.  
S 156.00 Offenses involving computers; definition of terms.
  The following definitions are applicable to this chapter except where
different meanings are expressly specified:
  1.  "Computer"  means  a  device  or  group  of  devices   which,   by
manipulation   of   electronic,  magnetic,  optical  or  electrochemical
impulses, pursuant to a  computer  program,  can  automatically  perform
arithmetic, logical, storage or retrieval operations with or on computer
data,  and  includes any connected or directly related device, equipment
or  facility  which  enables  such  computer  to  store,   retrieve   or
communicate  to or from a person, another computer or another device the
results of computer operations, computer programs or computer data.
  2. "Computer program" is property and means an  ordered  set  of  data
representing  coded  instructions  or  statements that, when executed by
computer, cause the computer to process data or direct the  computer  to
perform  one or more computer operations or both and may be in any form,
including magnetic storage media, punched cards, or stored internally in
the memory of the computer.
  3.  "Computer  data"  is  property  and  means  a  representation   of
information,  knowledge, facts, concepts or instructions which are being
processed, or have been processed in a computer and may be in any  form,
including magnetic storage media, punched cards, or stored internally in
the memory of the computer.
  4.  "Computer  service"  means  any  and  all  services provided by or
through the facilities of any computer communication system allowing the
input, output, examination, or transfer, of computer  data  or  computer
programs from one computer to another.
  5.  "Computer  material"  is  property  and means any computer data or
computer program which:
  (a) contains records of the medical history or medical treatment of an
identified or readily identifiable individual or individuals. This  term
shall  not  apply  to the gaining access to or duplication solely of the
medical history or medical treatment records of a person by that  person
or  by  another  specifically authorized by the person whose records are
gained access to or duplicated; or
  (b)  contains  records  maintained  by  the  state  or  any  political
subdivision thereof or any governmental instrumentality within the state
which  contains  any  information  concerning  a  person,  as defined in
subdivision seven of section 10.00 of this  chapter,  which  because  of
name,  number, symbol, mark or other identifier, can be used to identify
the  person  and  which  is  otherwise  prohibited  by  law  from  being
disclosed.  This  term  shall  not  apply  to  the  gaining access to or
duplication solely of records of a person by that person or  by  another
specifically authorized by the person whose records are gained access to
or duplicated; or
  (c)  is  not  and is not intended to be available to anyone other than
the person or persons  rightfully  in  possession  thereof  or  selected
persons  having  access thereto with his, her or their consent and which
accords or  may  accord  such  rightful  possessors  an  advantage  over
competitors  or  other  persons who do not have knowledge or the benefit
thereof.
  6.  "Computer  network"  means  the  interconnection  of  hardwire  or
wireless  communication  lines with a computer through remote terminals,
or a complex consisting of two or more interconnected computers.
  7. "Access" means  to  instruct,  communicate  with,  store  data  in,
retrieve  from,  or  otherwise  make use of any resources of a computer,
physically, directly or by electronic means.
  8. "Without authorization" means to  use  or  to  access  a  computer,
computer service or computer network without the permission of the owner
 or lessor or someone licensed or privileged by the owner or lessor where
such person knew that his or her use or access was without permission or
after  actual  notice to such person that such use or access was without
permission.  It  shall  also  mean the access of a computer service by a
person without permission where such person knew that  such  access  was
without  permission  or  after  actual  notice to such person, that such
access was without permission.
  Proof that such person used or accessed a computer,  computer  service
or  computer  network  through the knowing use of a set of instructions,
code  or  computer  program  that  bypasses,   defrauds   or   otherwise
circumvents  a  security  measure  installed  or  used  with  the user's
authorization on the computer,  computer  service  or  computer  network
shall  be  presumptive  evidence  that such person used or accessed such
computer, computer service or computer network without authorization.
  9. "Felony" as used in this article means any felony  defined  in  the
laws  of  this  state  or  any  offense defined in the laws of any other
jurisdiction for which a sentence to a term of imprisonment in excess of
one year is authorized in this state.

S 156.05 Unauthorized use of a computer.
  A  person  is  guilty of unauthorized use of a computer when he or she
knowingly uses, causes to be used,  or  accesses  a  computer,  computer
service, or computer network without authorization.
  Unauthorized use of a computer is a class A misdemeanor.

S 156.10 Computer trespass.
  A person is guilty of computer trespass when he or she knowingly uses,
causes to be used, or accesses a computer, computer service, or computer
network without authorization and:
  1.  he or she does so with an intent to commit or attempt to commit or
further the commission of any felony; or
  2. he or she thereby knowingly gains access to computer material.
  Computer trespass is a class E felony.

S 156.20 Computer tampering in the fourth degree.
  A  person is guilty of computer tampering in the fourth degree when he
or she uses, causes  to  be  used,  or  accesses  a  computer,  computer
service,  or  computer  network  without  authorization  and  he  or she
intentionally alters in any  manner  or  destroys  computer  data  or  a
computer program of another person.
  Computer tampering in the fourth degree is a class A misdemeanor.

S 156.25 Computer tampering in the third degree.
  A person is guilty of computer tampering in the third degree when he
commits the crime of computer tampering in the fourth degree and:
  1. he does so with an intent to commit or attempt to commit or further
the commission of any felony; or
  2. he has been previously convicted of any crime under this article or
subdivision eleven of section 165.15 of this chapter; or
  3. he intentionally alters in any manner or destroys computer
material; or
  4. he intentionally alters in any manner or destroys computer data or
a computer program so as to cause damages in an aggregate amount
exceeding one thousand dollars.
  Computer tampering in the third degree is a class E felony.

S 156.26 Computer tampering in the second degree.
  A  person is guilty of computer tampering in the second degree when he
or she commits the crime of computer tampering in the fourth degree  and
he or she intentionally alters in any manner or destroys:
  1.  computer  data  or a computer program so as to cause damages in an
aggregate amount exceeding three thousand dollars; or
  2. computer material that contains records of the medical  history  or
medical treatment of an identified or readily identifiable individual or
individuals  and  as  a  result  of such alteration or destruction, such
individual or individuals suffer serious physical injury, and he or  she
is  aware  of and consciously disregards a substantial and unjustifiable
risk that such serious physical injury may occur.
  Computer tampering in the second degree is a class D felony.

S 156.27 Computer tampering in the first degree.
  A person is guilty of computer tampering in the first degree when he
commits the crime of computer tampering in the fourth degree and he
intentionally alters in any manner or destroys computer data or a
computer program so as to cause damages in an aggregate amount exceeding
fifty thousand dollars.
  Computer tampering in the first degree is a class C felony.

S 156.29 Unlawful duplication of computer related material in the second degree.
 A person  is  guilty  of  unlawful  duplication  of  computer related
material in the second degree when having no right to do so, he  or  she
copies,  reproduces  or  duplicates in any manner computer material that
contains records of the medical  history  or  medical  treatment  of  an
identified  or  readily  identifiable  individual or individuals with an
intent to commit or further the  commission  of  any  crime  under  this
chapter.
  Unlawful duplication of computer related material in the second degree
 is a class B misdemeanor.

S 156.30 Unlawful duplication of computer related material in the first degree.
 A person is guilty of unlawful duplication of computer related in  the
first  degree  material when having no right to do so, he or she copies,
reproduces or duplicates in any manner:
  1. any computer data or computer program and thereby intentionally and
wrongfully deprives or appropriates from an owner  thereof  an  economic
value or benefit in excess of two thousand five hundred dollars; or
  2.  any  computer data or computer program with an intent to commit or
attempt to commit or further the commission of any felony.
  Unlawful duplication of computer related material in the first degree
 is a class E felony.

S 156.35 Criminal possession of computer related material.
  A person is guilty of criminal possession of computer related material
when having no right to do so, he knowingly possesses, in any form, any
copy, reproduction or duplicate of any computer data or computer program
which was copied, reproduced or duplicated in violation of section
156.30 of this article, with intent to benefit himself or a person other
than an owner thereof.
  Criminal possession of computer related material is a class E felony.

S 156.40 Operating an unlawful electronic sweepstakes.
  1.  As  used  in this section the following words and terms shall have
the following meanings:
  (a) "Electronic machine or device" means a mechanically,  electrically
or  electronically  operated  machine or device that is owned, leased or
otherwise possessed  by  a  sweepstakes  sponsor  or  promoter,  or  any
sponsors,  promoters,  partners, affiliates, subsidiaries or contractors
thereof; that is intended to be used by a sweepstakes entrant; that uses
energy; and that displays the results of a game entry or game outcome to
a participant on a screen or other mechanism  at  a  business  location,
including a private club; provided, that an electronic machine or device
may, without limitation:
  (1) be server-based;
  (2)  use  a  simulated game terminal as a representation of the prizes
associated with the results of the sweepstakes entries;
  (3) utilize software  such  that  the  simulated  game  influences  or
determines the winning or value of the prize;
  (4) select prizes from a predetermined finite pool of entries;
  (5)  utilize  a  mechanism that reveals the content of a predetermined
sweepstakes entry;
  (6) predetermine the  prize  results  and  stores  those  results  for
delivery at the time the sweepstakes entry results are revealed;
  (7) utilize software to create a game result;
  (8)  require  deposit  of  any money, coin or token, or the use of any
credit card, debit card, prepaid card or any other method of payment  to
activate the electronic machine or device;
  (9)  require  direct payment into the electronic machine or device, or
remote activation of the electronic machine or device;
  (10) require purchase of a related product having legitimate value;
  (11) reveal the prize incrementally, even though it may not  influence
if a prize is awarded or the value of any prize awarded;
  (12) determine and associate the prize with an entry or entries at the
time the sweepstakes is entered; or
  (13)  be  a  slot  machine or other form of electrical, mechanical, or
computer game.
  (b) "Enter" or "entry" means the act or  process  by  which  a  person
becomes eligible to receive any prize offered in a sweepstakes.
  (c)  "Entertaining  display"  means any visual information, capable of
being seen by a sweepstakes entrant, that takes the form of actual  game
play or simulated game play.
  (d)  "Prize" means any gift, award, gratuity, good, service, credit or
anything else of value, which may be transferred to  a  person,  whether
possession of the prize is actually transferred, or placed on an account
or other record as evidence of the intent to transfer the prize.
  (e) "Sweepstakes" means any game, advertising scheme or plan, or other
promotion, which, with or without payment of any consideration, a person
may  enter  to  win  or  become  eligible  to  receive  any  prize,  the
determination of which is based upon chance.
  2. A person is guilty of operating an unlawful electronic  sweepstakes
when  he or she knowingly possesses with the intent to operate, or place
into operation, an electronic machine or device to:
  (a) conduct a sweepstakes through the use of an entertaining  display,
including the entry process or the reveal of a prize; or
  (b)  promote  a  sweepstakes  that  is conducted through the use of an
entertaining display, including the entry process or  the  reveal  of  a
prize.
  3.  Nothing  in  this  section  shall be construed to make illegal any
activity which is lawfully conducted as the New York state  lottery  for
education   as  authorized  by  article  thirty-four  of  the  tax  law;
pari-mutuel wagering on horse  races  as  authorized  by  articles  two,
three,  four,  five-A,  and  ten of the racing, pari-mutuel wagering and
breeding  law;  the  game  of  bingo  as  authorized pursuant to article
fourteen-H of the general municipal law; games of chance  as  authorized
pursuant  to  article  nine-A  of  the  general municipal law; gaming as
authorized by article thirteen of the racing, pari-mutuel  wagering  and
breeding law; or pursuant to the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.
  Operating an unlawful electronic sweepstakes is a class E felony.

S 156.50 Offenses involving computers; defenses.
 In any prosecution:
  1.  under  section 156.05 or 156.10  of this article, it shall be a
defense that the defendant had reasonable grounds to believe that he had
authorization to use the computer;
  2. under section 156.20, 156.25, 156.26 or 156.27 of this  article  it
shall  be a defense that the defendant had reasonable grounds to believe
that he had the right to alter in any manner  or  destroy  the  computer
data or the computer program;
  3.  under  section  156.29 or 156.30  of  this article it shall be a
defense that the defendant had reasonable grounds to believe that he had
the right to copy, reproduce or duplicate in  any  manner  the  computer
data or the computer program.

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