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(However, whether this case should proceed in criminal court, rather than as a civil case, is a different issue).I will contrast the New Jersey court’s approach with that of California—where the legislature has enacted a new statute focused exclusively on online e-personation.The case made national news when Meier committed suicide after the imaginary Josh, who had earlier professed his love of Meier, seemingly turned against her, saying, “The world would be a better place without you.” Drew was indicted under a federal computer fraud statute, with charges of accessing computers without authorization to inflict emotional harm, and misdemeanor charges of accessing computers without authorization. The controversial prosecution was criticized for invoking a computer hacking statute to deal with e-personation.In other instances, a person might create a fake online profile of the targeted person in order to damage his or her reputation.Victims have needed a law they can turn to.” Senator Simitian then went on to provide examples of what he views as harmful e-personation, such as these: A teacher was impersonated by someone on Facebook whose posts made it seem as though the teacher was mocking a disabled student.

The boy was one of several recipients of an unsolicited text message providing the password to the victim’s email account.

Calling the comments that Thornton allegedly posted about the detective “horrendous,” the judge noted that while the current law does not specifically address electronic communications, it clearly applies to a broad spectrum of impersonation techniques.

Reportedly, the New Jersey legislature now intends to amend its identify theft statute to further clarify that it does, indeed, apply to electronic communications.

Texas’s is the narrowest; it only applies to e-personation via social networking sites.

Let’s hope that the trend of passing such statutes does not continue.

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