9 Mind-Blowing Cybersecurity Facts You Need to Know in 2019

9 Mind-Blowing Cybersecurity Facts You Need to Know in 2019

Lyton atinga

Cyber security has evolved tremendously over the years. As more sophisticated security systems are developed, cyber criminals are also horning their skills.
As a result, there is so much happening in the cyber world that it is becoming increasingly difficult to keep up. That is why I have put together these 10 cyber security facts and statistics to help you get an idea of exactly where we are headed in terms of internet security.
Here we go.

1. Cybercriminals are now top on FBI’s most wanted list
This is no longer a case of a bored college nerd hacking a bank for fun in their dorm. Cyber crimes are becoming serious and more organized hence getting attention from the FBI.
The first time FBI came up with a Cyber Most Wanted list was back in 2014. In just a span of 4 years, the list grew to 42 wanted cyber criminals and groups.
Until he was tracked down and charged last year, a notorious hacker known as Park Jin Hyok who is behind some of the most disastrous computer security breaches in history was top on the last. For example, he is responsible for the attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment and a myriad of other attacks mostly targeted on financial institutions.

2. Mobile malware is on the rise
People are now using mobile devices more than ever before. You have probably noticed that most marketing campaigns are now targeted on mobile users. Google is even making mobile responsiveness one of the top ranking factor for websites.
Cyber attackers have noticed this and are shifting their focus from desktop computers and laptop to smartphones. That means, as a mobile user, you are at higher risk of getting spyware, ransomware and viruses than previously.
In fact, according to Symantec’s Internet Security Threat Report 2018, mobile-based malware increased by 54% in 2017

3. Third-party app stores host most mobile malware

You are probably wondering where on earth you get all the malware that end up in your phone.
Well, according to the Symantec report, third-party mobile app stores are responsible for homing up to 99.9% of mobile malware. Again, attackers here are targeting a popular mobile trend. Everyone is downloading apps every day and app stores just happen to be the perfect platforms to launch attacks.
To be on the safe side site, stick to credible app platforms like Google Play and Apple App Store.

4. U.S. to account for half of breached data by 2023
It seems most of the cyber criminals are based in USA and that is why it happens to be the most hit. Alternatively, it could be that a good majority of lucrative companies that attackers are interested in are in USA. This is probably due to the amount of consumer and corporate data stored across the country.
Either way, Juniper Research Company estimates that a staggering 33 billion of data will be stolen by cybercriminals in 2023. These data majorly comprises personally identifiable information like social security numbers, credit card numbers, email addresses and so on.
The most interesting thing is that half of all global data breaches are expected to hit USA.

5. Up to 60 million Americans are victims of identity theft

Identity theft constitutes a huge majority of all cybercrime cases. So far, if a 2018 survey by The Harris Poll is anything to go by, close to 60 million Americans have fallen victims to identity theft.
According to the survey, an estimated 15 million consumers were affected by identity theft in 2017.

6. U.S. government to spend more than $15 billion on cyber security

According to numbers from the President’s Budget for fiscal year 2019, it is predicted that the government may have to put more than $15 billion to curb cyber security cases. That is 4% more compared to what was spent in 2018.
A huge chunk of these funds will be pumped into the Department of Defense which is set to receive up to $8.5 billion. The second is Homeland security taking up $1.7 billion of the total budget.

7. Cryptocurrency coin mining contributes significantly to cyber crime
According to Symantec’s Internet Security Threat Report 2018, “Coin mining represented the biggest growth area in cybercrime in 2017, with antivirus detections up 8,500 percent.”
But that is not all. The report goes on to reveal that coin mining grew immensely towards the end of 2017. That is, over the course of 2017, cryptocurrency coin mining increased by 34,000 percent.
This is even after Symantec is said to have blocked up to 8 million coin-mining events that were set to take place in December 2017 alone.

But why is coin mining a threat to cyber security? Well, considering that machines used to mine crypto coins consumes a lot of computing power, miners might attempt to add other people’s computers to their arsenal of machines in what is known as cryptojacking.

8. IoT devices can increase security vulnerabilities
Turns out as we strive towards a more connected home, we are also setting ourselves up for cyber attacks. Worrying reports from Symantec’s survey in 2015 shows that up to 50 smart devices available in the market were vulnerable to cyberattacks. A good example is a smart door lock which hackers could open remotely from online without requiring a password.
Nonetheless, it is expected that the number of Internet of Things will grow significantly in the coming years providing an even broader battle field for cybercriminals.

9. The Average cost of a data breach is rising.

One of the reasons why data breaches scare the hell out of most companies is because of the recovery cost attached to it. Statistics from IBM in 2018 provide some interesting insights into just how bad a data breach can hurt a company’s finances. According to the report, the average cost of a data breach to companies globally is about $3.86 million.

U.S companies seem to be the most hit by data breaches and its subsequent costs. The IBM reports shows that a typical U.S company could lose up to $7.91 million to a data breach.
The reason as to why these costs are rising is because it now takes a lot of time to identify a data breach. That is an average of 196 days to be exact.

The most important thing as an individual is to try and not be part of these statistics. There are a lot of precautions you need to take to ensure that you minimize exposure to cybercrime as much as possible.

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