Being arrested for an internet crime might seem like it wouldn't be the worst criminal act to be accused of, but internet crimes can lead to prison sentences and heavy fines if you're convicted. One kind of scam that is viewed particularly badly by the courts is called a phishing scam.
With a phishing scam, the person sending an email pretends to be a company or different person who is requesting information about an account. For instance, if you have a PayPal account, a person might send you an email pretending to be PayPal that asks for your login information to reset your password. If you follow through with the request, the person who sent the scam would be able to get into your account and access any credit cards or funds you have there.
Phishing scams come down to fraudulent activity that seeks to obtain the personal or financial information of a person. Fraud is a serious allegation, so if you've been accused of it, it's very important to start your defense as soon as possible. There is no federal anti-phishing statute, but many states have specific laws for what penalties a person can face. Federal authorities might also prosecute based on other charges like those for fraud or identity theft. If those laws are used against you, it could threaten your freedom and rights; you could be faced with time in prison or other penalties.
Our website has more information on what to do if you're accused of phishing online for financial or personal information. You may be able to defend yourself and have the charges reduced or dropped altogether.