Computer Crime Research Center


How cybercrime works

Date: February 20, 2007
Source: Out-Law.Com
By: Guillaume Lovet.

Hackers are no longer motivated by notoriety – it's now all about the money. Guillaume Lovet, Threat Response Team Leader at security firm Fortinet, identifies the players, their roles and the returns they enjoy on their investments.

This article was contributed to OUT-LAW by Guillaume Lovet.

Cybercrime has become a profession and the demographic of your typical cybercriminal is changing rapidly, from bedroom-bound geek to the type of organised gangster more traditionally associated with drug-trafficking, extortion and money laundering.

It has become possible for people with comparatively low technical skills to steal thousands of pounds a day without leaving their homes. In fact, to make more money than can be made selling heroin (and with far less risk), the only time the criminal need leave his PC is to collect his cash. Sometimes they don't even need to do that.

In all industries, efficient business models depend upon horizontal separation of production processes, professional services, sales channels etc. (each requiring specialised skills and resources), as well as a good deal of trade at prices set by the market forces of supply and demand. Cybercrime is no different: it boasts a buoyant international market for skills, tools and finished product. It even has its own currency.
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