2008 High Technology Crime In California: Annual Report to the Governor & Legislature

California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services

  • 51 pages
  • June 2009


California is home to many of the largest and most advanced technology companies in the world. We also have most of our citizens online in ever increasing amounts. In 2008, 75% of Californians reported that they use a computer at home, work, or school, and 70% use the Internet. Accompanying such an explosion in the telecommunication and Internet penetration has been a concomitant rise in technology crime. Our experience has taught us that technology and computers have given stalkers, pedophiles, destructive disgruntled employees, thieves, scam artists and those seeking infamy a new forum in which to ply their trade and cause misery. Fortunately, California has been a leader in cooperative and cost-effective strategies for protecting our infrastructure and citizens. This report documents the results of the work of the High Technology Theft Apprehension and Prosecution Program and makes recommendations to ensure the continued vitality of the defenses we have been building for over a decade.

The California High Technology Crimes Task Force strategy was created through Senate
Bill 1734 in 1998 to help combat computer-related crimes such as network intrusions,
computer hacking, theft of trade secrets, counterfeiting and piracy, telecommunications
fraud, and theft of high tech related equipment and cargo. This legislation established the
High Technology Theft Apprehension and Prosecution Program (HTTAP) which is now
funded via the California Emergency Management Agency (CalEMA).

Since 1998, the program has expanded to include five regional task forces covering 31
counties within the State of California. The mission of the HTTAP Program is the
investigation, apprehension, and prosecution of high technology crimes and to combat
identity theft.

Each of the task force comprises multi-agency, multi-jurisdictional high-tech crime teams
consisting of local, state, and federal investigators and prosecutors. Each team has the
ability to coordinate effective investigation and prosecution of cross-jurisdictional crime.
The task forces are able to efficiently pursue, arrest, and prosecute a wide range of criminal
offenders in a greater number of jurisdictions than individual agencies can – thereby
minimizing duplication of public resources and expense of time and money by victims,
witnesses and courts. Each task force provides high technology-oriented public safety
resources to the communities collectively served by all the task forces.


The High Technology Crime Advisory Committee was established concurrently with the
HTTAP Program. The purpose of the committee is to provide strategic oversight to the
program and conduct planning in response to high technology crime in California. This
committee includes representatives of the following agencies/organizations:

(1) A designee of the California District Attorneys Association.
(2) A designee of the California State Sheriffs Association.
(3) A designee of the California Police Chiefs Association.
(4) A designee of the Attorney General.
(5) A designee of the California Highway Patrol.
(6) A designee of the High Technology Crime Investigation Association.
(7) A designee of the California Emergency Management Agency.
(8) A designee of the American Electronic Association to represent California computer system manufacturers.
(9) A designee of the American Electronic Association to represent California computer software producers.
(10) A designee of CTIA–The Wireless Association.
(11) A representative of the California Internet industry.
(12) A designee of the Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International.
(13) A designee of the California Cable & Telecommunications Association.
(14) A designee of the Motion Picture Association of America.
(15) A designee of the California Communications Associations (CalCom).
(16) A representative of the California banking industry.
(17) A representative of the Office of Information Security and Privacy Protection.
(18) A representative of the Department of Finance.
(19) A representative of the State Chief Information Officer.
(20) A representative of the Recording Industry of America.
(21) A representative of the Consumers Union.

Computer and Technology Crime High-Tech Response Team (CATCH)

Lead Agency: San Diego County District Attorney’s Office

Northern California Computer Crimes Task Force (NC3TF)

Lead Agency: Marin County District Attorney’s Office

Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team (REACT)

Lead Agency: Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office

Southern California High Tech Task Force (SCHTTF)

Lead Agency: Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department

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