The digital revolution has been a double-edged sword in the Education sector. As much as it had an enormously positive impact on both education and scientific research, including the provision of new types of education like computer-aided instruction and online courses, it has become a source of real abuse by both students and members of academic staff. Students and Staff ‘ease of access to the digital world has lured some of them to steal others people publications, such as research papers, scientific reports and theses, and attribute them to themselves. This has caused rise to a new phenomena: “Plagiarism in the Digital Environment”, that should be seriously addressed due to its significant impact on both authors ‘property rights and scientific research.

Scientific theft is one of the most serious attacks on the right to intellectual property of the author, which is now at stake, after publishing in the digital environment has been interpreted by some, as a waiver of this right.

This study aims to define the concept of scientific theft in the digital environment, and identify the elements of criminality and impunity in it. It also aims to analyze the main difficulties facing the penal system in dealing with this phenomenon in order to propose the most appropriate methods for copyright protection in the digital environment.

The study reached a conclusion that there is a need to build a legal, educational, and technical system to confront this kind of attacks. The proposed strategy is based in part on educational and preventive measures in order to increase awareness of the culture of respect for the rights of the author and scientific integrity, and technical measures to detect plagiarism in research work, with attention to activate the laws and regulations governing this area.

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Criminal Law Commons