Cybersecurity and cyber crimes

Document Type:Research Paper

Subject Area:Computer Science

Document 1

Cybercrime is any unlawful or illegal activity that involves any computer or network connected device or even by use of computer technology (Gerdes, 2009). Cybercrime ranges from the process of introducing a virus to identity threats up to hacking of systems. Cybercrime can also be called computer crimes and have proved to have a lot of consequences if not counter attacked in time. When a business is prone to hacking, this may lead to loss of customer trust and also the loss of intellectual property if an individual's system is attacked or affected by activities of cybercrime. All these attacks resulting from cybercrime happen to lead to financial loss either in an indirect or direct way. According to research carried out, activities of cybercrime lead to losses amounting to billions each year. Cybercrime can be compared to the rate of return on any business investment. When the return rate of investment in any business is high and the risk of undertaking it is low, one is bound to see a lot of people willing to take the investment (Grant, 2003). This is what happens in cybercrime. This is because accessing sensitive data and information and making use of it directly means high returns, and this makes arresting such criminals very difficult thus leading to a high rise in cybercrime across the globe. Due to the fast-evolving rate of cybercrimes, many individuals have fallen victims of this menace of cyber-attack unknowingly. The main aim of this research proposal is to investigate on measures that can help attain a secure cyber environment, to find out the measures that organizations have put in place to ensure that their information is secure and to bring out the investigated measures that these organizations use to secure their information as control measures against cyber-attacks.

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The main causes of cybercrime are that computers have very small storage space for data thus making it possible to drive data easily from the computer either manually or virtually. Another leading cause of increased cybercrimes is that data in some computers is easy to access from unauthorized people. This is because criminals can get data such as passwords and other security codes to access the data. The other cause of cybercrime is the complexity in the operating systems that involve so many codes that human cannot cram this lets the criminals take advantage of this bottleneck of lack of knowledge to access the systems. Negligence by computer users may offer a chance for the criminals to get access to the systems thus making it another leading cause of cybercrime (Goutam, 2005).

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Lastly, loss of evidence in a case of data violation makes it hard to follow up the criminals. Computer crimes or cyber crimes can be categorized into four categories which include internal computer crimes. These are malicious activities where computer users either in organization implant viruses to other people's computers knowingly. This has become very popular today due to advancement in technology thus violating copyrights of personal works. An example of this types of crime is where a person downloads a movie from a site and then shares it with his friend he or she has committed a cyber-crime. Based on the worlds current trends, there are several types of cybercrimes which include; Ransomware, CEO mail scams, cyber terrorism, identity theft, impersonation, hacking, plagiarism. Ransomware is a malware that downloads itself and affects the owner's computer when the user clicks a fake link.

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It encrypts the computer files making them inaccessible to the owner unless the owner pays to get the decrypt key usually from the dark web. If the victim hands over the data, the criminals may use the information to get money from the account and also destroy the victim's credit rating. In case such happens it may take a very long time to fix and therefore protecting one's data online is a critical skill to learn so as to overcome such incidences (William & Swayer, 2015). Consequently, theft has also been used as a form of cybercrime through copyright violation in downloading stuff without the consent of the owner. Such material includes music, movies, and software. This form of cybercrime has become serious due to the emergence of so many types of software that encourage peer sharing of content.

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The other form of cybercrime is malicious software which are internet based programs used to destroy or disrupt a network. The core objective of this software is to gain access to a system so as to get important data or even destroying the present software in the given system. Another type of cybercrime is child abuse and soliciting (William & Swayer, 2015). In this type of cybercrime, criminals abuse children using chat rooms for the purpose of introducing these minors to pornography. The special unit of crime in the US has been spending pretty good time monitoring chat rooms inhabited by kids in efforts of reducing this abuse to the children. On December 1998, the Department of Defense (DoD) established A Joint Task Force on Computer Network Defense to defend the department’s networks and systems ‘from intruders and other attacks.

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” Since 1998 there have been many cases of cyber crimes and countries such as the United States, China and Russia have been fighting against cyber crimes. China has been known to commit economic espionage on other countries, the most publicly documented being Ghost Net surveillance network. This network affected 103 countries and was capable of activating the infected computer’s webcam and microphones, capturing keystrokes and copying files from an infected computer. This attack on the international community was perceived as the clearest sign that Beijing was committed to winning “the future information war” (Mitchelle et al. APTs are very hard to detect and handle, (Jeun, Lee & Won 2012). The criteria for identifying an APT includes the objectives, the time spent probing and accessing a system, the resources availed to the attacker, their skills and methods, attack origination points and the number of internal and external systems involved in the attack (Bodmer et al, 2012).

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The most severe power grid APT attack was experienced in Ukraine on 23rd December 2015. Prykarpattyaoblenergo electric utility in Ivano-Frankivsk Nebraska, a region in western Ukraine was hacked leading to outages in eight provinces. A second company, Kyivoblenergo, announced it had been hacked too and breakers in 30 substations had been disconnected, effectively killing electricity to 80,000 customers. Lack of job is a major factor that contributes to major crimes throughout the world. Individuals involved in cybercrimes mostly have the right computer skills and educational qualifications but still never quite get the jobs or even with the employed not getting paid their dues which leads to life frustrations. This makes these individuals opt to fraud through the internet as a way of survival. Cybercrime has adverse effects on the business and political environments such as; lots of time and money that should have been used to make revenue is wasted while rectifying the attacks caused by computer hackers.

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Organizations also tend to lose revenue generation since consumers lose confidence in the organization after a cyber-attack. Cryptography provides confidentiality of the information as it cannot be read by any other person, it also maintains the integrity of the information as the information cannot be altered while in transit or storage, the information cannot be denied by the creator at any stage hence non reputable and finally the identity of the sender or receiver can be clearly confirmed. When writing or in the field of technology and society issues, cybersecurity can’t be ignored. Over the past few years, even decades cyber-attacks has increased exposed personal information and business. My audience would be for people that use the computer on an everyday base. The audience target is going to be between the ages of 15-to 30.

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One can install an antivirus program and spy-ware check programs and make sure that they are kept up-to-date. Cybercrime can be dealt with by using the solutions offered by cross-domain solutions. This is because by use of this cross-domain solution the organizations can exchange information with the security agents so as to get in touch with these criminals. This will help the companies use a unified system that detects both manual and automatic transfer of important information within different security levels. This can make the security agents catch up with the criminals as the criminals also cooperate in their activities. For instance, The Indian Information Technology Act, 2000, which is primarily meant to be a legislation to promote e-commerce, is not effective in dealing with several emerging cyber-crimes like cyber harassment, stalking, hacking and defamation.

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It is therefore important for the public to be aware of cyber crimes and methods that they can use to avoid being victims of the crime. The public should avoid telling strangers any private information about themselves to prevent strangers from taking advantage of the information given. People who own website should be taught how to manage the websites by watching traffic and post host-based intrusion detection devices on their servers. Consequently, the activities on the websites should be monitored and any detected irregularity should be removed or deleted from the website. The attacker, a former contractor of local water plant PCS, had used the inadequately protected wireless network to access the system. Therefore, this method should be used alongside other methods to prevent intrusions. Children and teenagers are the greatest victims of cyber crimes.

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This is because children spend most of their free time on the internet and in playing computer games. They tend to come across some advertisements that may attract teenagers to switch to cyber hacking sites without their consent. Many countries have joined hands to ensure that cyber crimes come to an end. The coordination of criminal and cyber laws at the international level and cooperation between countries are now very essential for tackling the problem of cyber crimes. The advent of the internet has virtually broken the national boundaries and the whole world has not turned into a global village. The efforts at the level of organization like OECD, UN, and Council of Europe, are at the forefront in increasing international cooperation (Townsed, 2005). The convention of European Council has taken a resolution to increase international cooperation among member countries for the timely assistance to each other in preventing and detecting cyber crimes.

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Business organizations, mainly small and medium-size face critical challenges in protecting data. Limited financial and technological resources make it difficult for them to upgrade the security system and to stay updated with technology. However, better awareness of cybersecurity and proper planning can prove to be very beneficial for such business organizations in protecting their information and trade secrets from being disclosed. Many small business organizations are now taking initiatives to protect their information from being accessed illegally. Cybersecurity is equally important for local, state, and central government as these organizations maintain a huge amount of confidential data and records concerning the country and its citizens. People should also be encouraged to report cyber threats to appropriate authorities that the government should establish so that cyber-crime tackling can be smooth(McIntosh, 2003). Legislation should also be passed to punish computer criminals and ensure that the law enforcers and courts deal with cyber-crime cases faster so as to bring the criminals to justice immediately they are caught.

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This will in a large way to discourage their activities. The law should classify cyber-crime like murder and other serious offenses like felony so that the courts can deal with the offenders mercilessly. People should also report to the brands that are misused by the criminals to threaten them so as to take measures to avoid a repeat of such acts. Equifax did not match the vulnerability relating to their Apache Servers for two months, while in the case of the SA Master Deeds Leak, the back-up was published on a public facing server. Cyber Awareness might not have stopped both these incidents, but they do show that the biggest vulnerability is the human aspect. The combined cost of hardware, software, and policies for cybersecurity can easily be over a million rand per annum for a medium-sized company, but this can be meaningless expenditure if the end users in your organization are not properly trained to enforce and apply cybersecurity principles and good practices.

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Awareness training will provide your organization with the best value for money solution in the fight against cyber threats. Companies should provide cybersecurity awareness program based on factors such as the culture of the organization, its policies, possible threats, and procedures. million in financial services, $14. million in the technology sector, and $12. million in communications industries. ” Cyber attacks occurred recently which led to the leak of eBay employee log-ins, allowing access to 233 million eBay accounts. Such attacks are not easy to detect and it is almost impossible to recover from such losses. However, there is still a need to create awareness so that people can be able to learn the new styles and trick used by hackers to create cyber crimes. Consequently, police need to be trained on how to handle various cybercrime suspects and strict measures should be put in place to prevent cybercrime suspects from using corrupt means to get out of jail.

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Countries should take part in creating awareness and campaigning against cyber crimes and to help in bringing forth those who engage in committing such crimes. Generally, the internet is not a bad invention since it has made the world to be a global village and people have been able to trade and to share their culture through a different online platform. Education has also been spread faster which has enabled different countries to embrace new technology. Gerdes, L. I. Cybercrime. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2009 Glance, A. Quick.  Cyber situational awareness. Springer US, 2009. Jeun I. Lee Y. Won D. Timothy S. Stephanie R. Insider Threat Study: Computer System Sabotage in Critical Infrastructure Sectors, National Threat Assessment Ctr Washington Dc, 2005. online http://www. dtic. Chicago, Ill: Raintree. Von Solms, Rossouw, and Johan Van Niekerk. From information security to cybersecurity.

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 computers & security38 (2013): 97-102. Williams, B.

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