Global economy loses more than half a trillion dollars through cybercrime


The global economy loses roughly $600 billion every year due to cybercrime, experts have warned. 

A new worldwide study from McAfee added that global losses are also set to increase more and more going forward, given that in 2014, the damage stood at $445 billion.

“Crime is more efficient, less risky, more profitable and has never been easier to execute,” said Steve Grobman, chief technology officer for McAfee.

“Consider the use of ransomware, where criminals can outsource much of their work to skilled contractors. Ransomware-as-a-service cloud providers efficiently scale attacks to target millions of systems, and attacks are automated to require minimal human involvement. Add to these factors cryptocurrencies that ease rapid monetisation, while minimising the risk of arrest, and you must sadly conclude that the $600 billion cyber crime figure reflects the extent to which our technological accomplishments have transformed the criminal economy as dramatically as they have every other portion of our economy.”

The report adds that banks are still the number one target for cyber criminals, while nation states are still the most dangerous cyber criminals. Russia and North Korea are considered the most active in this respect, while China is generally perceived as most active in cyber espionage.

“Our research bore out the fact that Russia is the leader in cybercrime, reflecting the skill of its hacker community and its disdain for western law enforcement, said James Lewis, senior vice president at CSIS. “North Korea is second in line, as the nation uses cryptocurrency theft to help fund its regime, and we’re now seeing an expanding number of cybercrime centres, including not only North Korea but also Brazil, India and Vietnam.”

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