Cyber crime is defined as a crime in which a computer is the object of the crime (hacking, phishing, spamming) or is used as a tool to commit an offense (child pornography, hate crimes). Cyber criminals may use computer technology to access personal information, business trade secrets or use the internet for exploitative or malicious purposes.
Criminals can also use computers for communication and document or data storage. Criminals who perform these illegal activities are often referred to as hackers.
Information theft is the most expensive and fastest growing segment of cybercrime. Largely driven by the increasing exposure of identity information to the web via cloud services. But it is not the only target. Industrial controls that manage power grids and other infrastructure can be disrupted or destroyed. And identity theft isn’t the only goal, cyber attacks may aim to compromise data integrity (destroy or change data) to breed distrust in an organization or government.
Cybercriminals are becoming more sophisticated, changing what they target, how they affect organisations and their methods of attack for different security systems.