California based Internet Security firm Malwarebytes has unveiled a report revealing a new mafia launching Cyber Attacks including the spread of ransomware infections. The report claims that cyber attacks on businesses increased by an average of 23% in 2017 when compared to last year. The security vendor also discovered in its study that in some areas such as ransomware, the increase was more than 20 times that of 2016.
Calling the new mafia as the Gangs of Vigilantes, Malwarebytes has identified the emergence of four distinct groups of cybercriminals: traditional gangs, state-sponsored actors, ideological hackers and hackers for hire.
According to the analysis of the Malwarebytes researchers, the findings are as follows-
Traditional gangs- These gangs are formed by criminals who establish an enterprise with cybercrime objectives. There is evidence that some of these gangs work under mafia rings which are into drug trafficking, child & human trafficking, money laundering businesses.
State Sponsored Actors- These gangs are generally funded and nurtured by military organizations serving a nation. And the gang’s main objective will be to conduct espionage and launch cyber attacks and ransomware attacks on the critical infrastructure like power grids, nuclear plants, and government websites.
Ideological hackers- These hackers are those who launch cyber attacks in retaliation for government/individual actions. Such online criminal gangs launch severe attacks such as DDoS and even data thefts as they look to expose embarrassing data of national interest.
Hackers available on lease- Such gangs generally coax jobless ethical hackers and student geeks from launching cyberattacks on organizations and nations. This is maturing into a huge market as cybercriminals can be brought on rent from the darknet.
What does this data mean?
Malwarebytes research says that cybercrime is rising faster than any other crime these days and its research results prove it to the core. Researchers say that unless regulators, law enforcement, and the cybersecurity industry really help organizations and individuals in creating awareness of such crimes, the cybercrime industry will remain as a king in cyberspace.