The Top Five Cybercrime Threats in 2018

Businesses no longer have only their brick and mortar security to worry about.  Their presence online as well as local and cloud-based data are all at risk.  The news seems constantly filled with stories of data breaches, ransomware crimes, and hacking that has brought some companies to their knees.  It’s a criminal lawyers dream.

It’s no wonder that cyber-crime is at the top of the list of concerns most corporate boards are facing.  Even well prepared sophisticated companies have found chinks in their armor.  Below are five of the cyber-crime threats to face companies in 2018.

The Hoard Is Growing

The sheer quantity of cyber-criminals will continue to grow in 2018.  Why?  Because the technology enabling these people is becoming easier to learn, access, and deploy.  In years gone by you’ve needed to be a computer genius to even contemplate running a hack, but today that landscape has changed forever.  Today limited technical knowledge is required to launch sophisticated viruses.  And the press isn’t helping.  Every time a cyber-crime is publicized hackers take notice and redouble their efforts.  For example, many news outlets reported that ransomware was a billion dollar industry in 2017; how could any reasonable hacker resist such a juicy honey pot?

Are You An Unknowing Cryptominer?

According to Criminal Lawyers Adelaide, Crypto currencies such as Bitcoin require vast amounts of computer power to “mine” and with limited resources hackers have become proficient at hijacking individual and company computers to do their mining for them.  Countless corporations have fallen victim unknowingly to this form of “cryptojacking”.  Unbeknownst to them, their internal computer networks have been working for another master, the cryptojacker who’s taken over and using their machines to mine for gold.

The Vulnerable Are At Risk

Who is the easiest target for a cyber-criminal?  Organizations that don’t have the resources to effectively combat cyber thieves.  Industry verticals such as education will take a much harder hit in the years to come as these are “soft targets” with a host of valuable personal information resident on their computers.  They are data rich and protection poor.  Furthermore, the “Internet of Things” in the healthcare vertical creates ripe opportunities for cyber theft.  If you’re not familiar with the Internet of Things it’s basically mobile machines (a heart monitor, a mobile patient record computer, etc.) all connected to the internet and susceptible to hackers.  One Las Vegas Casino was recently hacked through a Bluetooth enabled aquarium thermometer.

The Worms Are Coming

In 2018 we’ll see the rise of malware worms.  These extremely effective viruses such as WannaCry and Trickbot work with such success that we can only expect their use to increase.  Criminals will adjust their techniques to make less noise, and therefore remain undetected longer, wreaking even more havoc on the networks they penetrate.

Hitting Where it Hurts

Cyber criminals will attack us where we feel most safe – the security software we currently employ.  If they can breach these walls they will have the keys to the kingdom as it were, the ability to subvert the tools we believe are keeping back the hordes of viruses we dread.

While this picture may seem bleak, there are things we can do to get ahead of the criminals.  First, increase the IT and security training to bridge the skills gap in our country.  Devote more resources and funding to this type of education.  Companies need to prioritize security education for all employees.  Investing in next-gen anti-virus software that learns and studies the behavior of ransomeware criminals will be needed.

While it’s impossible to protect against all attacks, keeping these threats in mind and planning for the future will help keep you ahead of the game.

The Top Five Cybercrime Threats in 2018
Tagged on: