When computer crime statutes had yet to be enacted, computer crimes were subjected to traditional criminal laws. This policy resulted in greater expense and other considerable difficulties. These problems and difficulties paved the way for the emergence of a consensus calling for legislators to intervene and enact specific computer crime legislation suited to confronting this new type of criminal activity. Many countries in the world responded by enacting new criminal legislation and many others are on their way to take similar legislative steps.
For the legislative intervention to be sound and successful two major questions should be adequately addressed; the scope of legislative intervention and the nature of computer crime legislation enacted. Regarding the first question, new criminal provisions are needed only to cover those crimes that are unique to computers themselves, other crimes in which a computer is used simply as an instrument for perpetration are either covered by existing criminal provisions or can be covered by simple amendments of said provisions. Another step that should be taken by legislators is the amendment of existing criminal laws with an aim to cover some special cases such as the cases in which the computer is used as an instrument for committing known traditional crimes, making the perpetration of such crimes easier or resulting in more dangerous consequences compared to their more traditional forms and cases in which intangible digitized property comes under threat from criminal activities.
While many countries in the world have soundly followed such a method in dealing with computer related misconducts legislatively, others have failed to do so. In some countries, the legislator has criminalized some criminal conducts that have long since been criminalized by that country's penal code. This creates conflict between criminal provisions, posing problems to prosecutors and courts alike.
Regarding the nature of computer crime statutes, the legislator is presented with two options. The first is the inclusion of the aforementioned criminal provisions in one separate code as one specific computer crime statute. The second is inserting substantive criminal provisions related to computer crimes into the existing penal law of the country. While the first method preserves the unity of substantive criminal law of the country in one code and prevents the dispersion of criminal provisions into many separate laws, the second one would, by contrast, create much-needed public awareness of computer crime.