Monday 22 January 2018

5 types of cybercriminals

Technology has evolved. Unfortunately, humanity does not always evolve with it. As soon as the internet was invented, bad people were coming up with bad ways to use it.

Here are five types of cybercriminals:

INDIVIDUALS who are motivated by financial gain, basically your run-of-the-mill thieves with a 21st century twist. They can get you with phishing or malware scams.

ORGANIZED GROUPS who are motivated by financial gain. These groups are often highly organized, with specialization of roles and responsibilities. They often attack banks or go after intellectual property.

NATION-STATES whose intent ranges from monitoring other countries to interfering in elections to outright cyberattacks. They sometimes go after intellectual property. (Here's looking at you, China.) Some states employ thousands of citizens to conduct such activity.

CYBERTERRORISTS who partake in a sort of digital nihilism, where the only goal is disruption and destruction, often for political reasons. While ISIS immediately comes to mind, cyberterrorism is not limited to jihadists, but can include any group whose aim is to disrupt and destroy, such as eco-terrorists, white supremacists, and homophobes.

HACKTIVISTS are distinguished from cyberterrorists in that their goal is not destruction per se. Hacktivism is the subversive use of computers and computer networks to promote a political or social agenda. The term is confusing, because many self-described hacktivists are do-gooders who seek to advance human rights. While their actions are technically illegal, we'd like to distinguish them from the attention seekers or those with nefarious social goals or the generic "disrupt the status quo" justification. These often call themselves "hacktivists" though they would fall into the cyberterrorist category.

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