Professor Dr. Bert-Jaap Koops of Tilburg University Institute of Law, Technology, and Society has published Criminal law and Cyberspace as a Challenge for Legal Research, SCRIPTed 9(3), article 254 (2012).
Here is the abstract:
The Internet transforms crime and crime-fighting, which has fundamental implications for the law and legal research. Since online and offline activities are seamlessly integrated, cybercrime is no longer a specialist field but affects the core of 21st-century criminal law. The transformation of crime exposes gaps in substantive and procedural criminal law, creating three types of challenges. First, regulatory challenges, e.g., how to deal with sovereignty and jurisdiction conflicts in borderless cyberspace. Second, normative challenges, such as value conflicts related to Internet content. Third, technological challenges, related to secure computing and value-sensitive design. The interplay of these challenges should lie at the heart of criminal-law research in the cyberspace age.
Classic legal research often addresses problems in a one-dimensional manner: the law is taken as a given and then applied to a societal issue, or a social development is used to argue why and how the law should change. However valuable such research can be, legal research needs to factor in the role that technology increasingly plays in law and society, as well as the process of the mutual shaping of regulation, technology, and society. This calls for multidisciplinary research aiming for prudent solutions to regulatory problems. If criminal law is to stay abreast of the 21st century challenges of crime permeated by cyberspace, dogmatic understanding of the criminal law system itself no longer suffices. Rather, researchers need to be well-versed in regulation theory, adopting concepts like the regulatory tool-box and multi-level governance, to meet the challenges of globally, digitally networked crime.