Cybercrime in the Modern Day

Topics: Computer security, Malware, Computer Pages: 9 (3288 words) Published: March 16, 2013

By Brian Madril
ITT University
Intro to Information Security
Professor: John Freund

Date: February 21, 2013
In this fast paced world that we now live in there are many types of electronic devices that we work with every day. If we are not vigilant with their use we can become victims of what is called “Cybercrime”. By definition cybercrime is refers to any crime that involves a computer and a network (Moore 1). The most common misconception is that cybercrime only involves personal computers. With just about everything having a smart processor and/or linked to a network, the scope of cybercrimes can be very expansive. Halder & Jaishankar went on to broaden the definition by defining cybercrimes as "Offences that are committed against individuals or groups of individuals with a criminal motive to intentionally harm the reputation of the victim or cause physical or mental harm to the victim directly or indirectly, using modern telecommunication networks such as Internet (Chat rooms, emails, notice boards and groups) and mobile phones (SMS/MMS)". (Halder & Jaishankar 2). By broadening the definition it gives us a better understanding of what kind of crimes can be accomplished. Not only must we be vigilant with our home and work computers but we must also be vigilant about any other networked device that we use every day. Items such as are cell phones, home alarms, webcams, and cars are just few of the devices that can be hacked. Basically anything with a smart processor and network connection can be hacked in some way or another. Cybercrimes can also involve non-electronic items such as identity theft and credit card theft. The main thing that brought on the expansion of cybercrime was the growth of the internet. Many of the phreakers (phone hackers on the older analog phone system) evolved into doing simple computer network hacking. In the early days there was not much use of credit cards to pay for items so hacking was mainly used to gain access and steal data. As the network evolved and the protocols for using credit cards was introduced many shoppers took to the net. Many organized crime groups saw opportunity and used hackers to exploit software vulnerabilities and steal credit card information, since online banking was not widely used many victims would not find out about the crime until their next statement. Web technology now exists for banking where customers can check their balances and receive instant alerts when their cards are being used. I will use a common crime to explain how wide the scope of cybercrimes can go. A hacker (either involved with a crime ring or not) will hack into the victims computer. Many people store a lot of information on their personal computers and phones that can be used to steal the victim’s identity. Believe it or not it is actually easier for a crime ring to steal information and make a stolen identity than it is to obtain the victims credit card numbers online (online purchases use encryption software). The next step will be filtering the useable information and sell it to buyers on the network. The buyers are usually units of organized crime that will then use the information to create a false identity. The new identity will be used to apply for credit cards and obtain goods with the stolen credit cards. The stolen identity can also be used by a person entering the United States illegally with the stolen identity they can obtain work. I have just explained a small scale attack an example of a large scale attack would be “In January 2012 experienced a security breach after as many as 24 million customers' credit card numbers, personal information, billing and shipping addresses had been compromised”(DAVID K. LI, 3). This mass amount of information could be valuable to any cyber crime faction; they could make millions off of it With cyber attacks growing steadily over the years, it has become...
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