The rise of cyber crime

There’s no denying that cyber crime is getting worse every year, but how much has it actually risen over the past few years?

Date Number of records breached
2010 3.8 million
2011 174 million
2012 44 million
2013 822 million
2014 700 million
2015 736 million
2016 3.1 billion

With an increase of more than 3 billion records breached over six years, cyber crime is rapidly increasing and it doesn’t seem like organisations’ security functions are keeping up.

So, where did it all start?

The first ransomware attack was reported in 1989. The victim was told to pay $189 in order to receive a repair tool. Nowadays, a lot of companies would have been happy to pay $189 – especially the South Korean company ‘Nayana’, which had to pay approximately $1 million in a ransomware attack earlier this year.

The president of the National Health Information Sharing and Analysis Center said, “Ransomware will continue to be a threat and evolve, not to just encrypting data, but also to blackmailing data owners based on the content of the data”.

Looking back 20 years, the most common cyber attacks were malicious code, Trojans and advanced worms. Ten years later this changed to botnets, DNS attacks and spam sites. Now, cyber attacks include banking malware, bitcoin wallet stealers, ransomware, PoS attacks, to name a few. The methods and volume of cyber attacks increases every year in line with new technology and the criminal hackers developing their knowledge.

So, what does the future of cyber crime look like?

The total cost of cyber crime is expected to hit US$6 trillion (£4.5 trillion) by 2021. This would make it the greatest transfer of economic wealth in history, becoming more profitable than the global trade of all major illegal drugs. But even with the evolution of technology, humans have now become the top target for cyber criminals, ahead of machines. Just over 51% of the world’s population currently uses the Internet, and this is expected to increase to 75% by 2022 and 90% by 2030.

The damage costs of ransomware are predicted to exceed $5 billion this year, and this is expected to quadruple by 2020. It is estimated that by 2019 a business will fall victim to a ransomware attack every 14 seconds.

With this rapid increase in cyber crime, it is essential that cyber security professionals are keeping up with the development and learning how to prevent and recover from these attacks. IT Governance’s cyber incident response management products and services will help your organisation identify, detect and contain incidents faster, mitigating the impact of an incident and restoring services in a trusted manner. Speak to one of our experts today to find out more about how your organisation can prevent a cyber attack.

Get started with your incident response planning strategy today >>