The rules for a hand ball are pretty simple. If the ball touches a player between his shoulder and his fingers, the ball has been handled. When such an infraction occurs, the referee has one option: Awarding a “Direct free kick from the position where the offence occurred (see Law 13 – Position of free kick) or penalty kick.”
In many cases, cards are also delivered to the guilty party, including a red card if the offense was deliberate enough.
One thing that shouldn’t happen: A goal being awarded after the ball has been handled by the scoring player. For historical sake, ask Diego Maradona, proud owner of the “Hand of God” goal, which was probably done as payback for the Falklands War. Now, thanks to Luis Fabiano’s second goal against Ivory Coast. While it was a great finish from Fabiano, because he first controlled the ball with his shoulder, the score shouldn’t count.