Even though happening in the virtual space, cybercrime has real implications for individuals, nonprofits, businesses, and governments alike. The scary part is that cybercrime happens on the dark web, which internet users cannot access. But its effects are devastating. It can lead to the loss of millions of dollars, disruption of services, and total system failure.
According to Forbes Magazine, more than 86.2 percent of surveyed organizations were affected by cyberattacks by June 2021. In 2020 alone, ransomware attacks targeting US companies cost around $915 million, meaning no one is completely secure online.
What drives the “bad guy” in the cyber world? Which crimes are you likely to face? Can you avoid or prevent them? This article discusses different types of cybercrimes and the motivation behind them.
Different Types of Cybercrimes
Cybercrime involves the use of a computer or the targeting of a computer. It may happen in many different forms, depending on the criminal’s modus operandi. Here are examples of cybercrimes:
- Hacking: Hacking happens when criminals gain access to a computer or network without authorization. Once they gain access to a computer, hackers can commit a crime.
- Malware: Malware is a program written to infect and harm a computer system. It might manifest as adware, spyware, worm, trojan horse, or virus.
- Viruses: A virus may attack a computer from removable drives or the internet. It can alter how your computer works or delete important data.
- Ransomware: When it infects a computer, ransomware holds the data captive until the owner pays a ransom, which could run into the millions.
- Phishing: Phishing attacks usually happen to individuals with criminals using URLs to steal login information to bank accounts and other sensitive services.
- DDOS Attacks: Distributed denial of service (DDOS) renders a computer network useless or crashes by directing too much traffic at it.
- Extortion or Cyber Blackmails: Cybercriminals may use email to blackmail and extort money from unsuspecting individuals. They may threaten to release sensitive information, nude photos, and so on so that the individual makes payment.
What Motivates Cybercriminals?
The major driving force behind cybercrime is greed. They usually steal and sell personal information or use it to commit identity theft. They may also demand ransom for data under captivity or payment from blackmail emails. However, some want to make a social or political statement, such as making the hacked documents public. Still, some might be craving status or want to feel good by disrupting computer networks.
The Place of Good Guys in Cyber Security
It is increasingly becoming necessary to mount resources to counter cyber criminals. This needs cybersecurity professionals with skills to prevent or counter live cyber attacks. Depending on where you live, you might likely need cybersecurity services to protect yourself or your business online. For example, the companies providing cybersecurity in St. Louis, MI, are engaging professional hackers to protect individual’s bank accounts, reputation, and trust.
Despite its seriousness, cybercrime is easier to prevent or counter. You can prevent it by putting in place various measures like strong passwords, firewalls, antivirus programs, and more. Alternatively, you can hire cybersecurity experts to help you combat this severe menace. Luckily there is a whole industry that’s cropping up in this area. Would you embrace it?