Worldwide Cybercrime Damages Estimated To Reach $6 Trillion Annually By 2021

The 2019 Official Annual Cybercrime Report from Cybersecurity Ventures displays that cybercrime is the biggest threat to every firm worldwide, and among the most significant troubles with humanity. The numbers in the report reflect the impact on society.

In August of 2016, Cybersecurity Ventures anticipated that cybercrime would cost the world $6 trillion annually by 2021. The costs were a mere $3 trillion in 2015. This type of crime presents the greatest transfer of financial riches in history, risks the incentives for innovation and investment, and soon will be more lucrative than the international trade of all primary illegal drugs put together.

The cybercrime forecast stands, and over the past two-plus years, is substantiated by hundreds of notable media outlets, academia, senior government officials, associations, sector experts, the largest technology and cybersecurity companies, and cybercrime fighters globally.

In an interview with Cybercrime Magazine, Frank W. Abagnale, an FBI specialist for over 40 years and one of the globe’s most respected authorities on forgery, embezzlement, and protected documents, confirms the $6 trillion cybercrime damages cost forecast. “I’m very concerned with cyber starting to turn very dark,” says Abagnale. “Up until now, it’s just a financial crime for the purpose of stealing money or information that is money. But now we also have the ability to turn someone’s pacemaker off.”

Cybersecurity Ventures’ damages cost forecasts are based on historical cybercrime figures including recent year-over-year growth, a remarkable increase in a hostile nation state-sponsored and organized crime gang in hacking activities, and a cyberattack surface which will be even higher in 2021 than it is today.

Cybersecurity Ventures anticipates cybercrime loss will set us back the globe $6 trillion every year by 2021, up from $3 trillion in 2015.

Cybercrime costs consist of damage and destruction of information, stolen money, lost productivity, robbery of copyright, theft of individual and monetary information, embezzlement, fraudulence, post-attack interruption to the normal course of a company, forensic investigation, restoration and deletion of hacked information and systems, and reputational harm.

“This dramatic surge (in damages costs) only strengthens the sharp increase in the number of organizations unprepared for a cyberattack,” states Robert Herjavec, founder and CEO at Herjavec Group, a Managed Security Services Provider with workplaces and SOCs (Security Operations Centers) globally.

Cyberattacks are the fastest expanding crime in the U.S., and they are increasing in size, refinement, and cost. A significant information breach– the second-largest ever before, suffered by Marriott and disclosed near the end of 2018, is approximated to have exposed 500 million user accounts. The Yahoo hack, the largest ever before, had impacted 3 billion user accounts (up from an earlier estimation of 1 billion). These major hacks, together with the WannaCry and NotPetya cyberattacks, which occurred in 2017, are not just larger scale and more complex than previous attacks, but they are a sign of the times.

The cybercrime epidemic has struck the USA so hard that a supervisory special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation that looks into cyber breaches told The Wall Street Journal that every American citizen must anticipate that every one of their information (personally identifiable information) has been stolen and is currently on the dark web.

“DDoS attacks, ransomware, and an increase in zero-day exploits are adding to the cybercrime damages prediction becoming a reality,” adds Herjavec. “What worries me though, is that all the hype around cybercrime, the headings, the breach notices, and so on, makes us complacent. The risk is very real, and we can’t allow ourselves to be lulled into a sense of inevitability.” 

Cyber Attack Surface

Worldwide, everyone is connecting up to the internet, people, places, and things. The rate of Internet connection is surpassing our ability to safeguard it effectively.

In 1989, the World Wide Web was launched. A few years later, in 1991, the first-ever website went live. Today there are nearly 1.8 billion sites.

There are 4.54 billion Internet users in 2020 (close to half of the globe’s population of 7.7 billion), coming from 2 billion in 2015. Cybersecurity Ventures anticipates that there will be 6 billion Internet users by 2022 (75% of the predicted world population of 8 billion), and more than 7.5 billion Internet customers by 2030 (90% of the forecasted globe population of 8.5 billion, 6 years old and older).

Like street crime, which traditionally grew with population growth, we are witnessing a similar development of cybercrime. It’s not just about more advanced weapons; it’s as much about the expanding number of human and electronic targets.

Cisco confirms that cloud data center web traffic will represent 95% of total data facility traffic by 2021. See it this way; cloud computing will wipe out information facilities entirely over the next 3-4 years.

Cybersecurity Ventures anticipates that the overall quantity of information kept in the cloud, that includes public clouds operated by suppliers and social networks companies, federal government possessed clouds that are available to people and businesses, and private clouds owned by mid-to-large-sized companies, will be 100X greater in 2021 than it is today. 

‘The Big Data Bang’ is an IoT globe that will blow up from 2 billion objects (smart devices, communicating wirelessly) in 2006 to a forecasted 200 billion by 2020, according to Intel.

Gartner forecasts that over half a billion wearable devices will be sold worldwide in 2021, up from approximately 310 million in 2017. Wearables consist of smartwatches, head-mounted display screens, body-worn cameras, Bluetooth headsets, and fitness monitors.

In spite of pledges from biometrics developers of a future without any more passwords, which might occur at one point in the far-out future, a 2017 report found that the world will need to cyber safeguard 300 billion passwords globally by 2020.

Over 111 billion lines of new software code are produced each year, which presents a massive number of vulnerabilities.

The globe’s digital content is expected to expand from 4 billion terabytes (4 zettabytes) in 2016 to 96 zettabytes by 2020 (this is just how big a zettabyte is).

The far corners of the Deep Web, called the Dark Web, is deliberately concealed and utilized to conceal and promote abhorrent criminal tasks. According to one report, some estimates put the dimension of the Dark Web (which is not indexed or accessible by search engines) at as much as 5,000 times larger than the surface internet and growing at a speed that defies quantification.

ABI has anticipated that more than 20 million connected vehicles will ship with built-in software-based safety and security technology by 2020, and Spanish telecom service provider Telefonica states by 2020, 90% of cars will be on the internet, compared to merely 2% in 2012.

Hundreds of thousands, and potentially millions of people, can be hacked currently through their wirelessly connected and electronically monitored implantable medical devices (IMDs). These type of devices include cardioverter defibrillators (ICD), deep brain neurostimulators, pacemakers, ear tubes, insulin pumps, and more. 

Dr. Janusz Bryzek, Vice President, MEMS and Sensing Solutions at Fairchild Semiconductor forecasts that, twenty years from now, there will be 45 trillion networked sensors.

Cybersecurity Investing

Cybercrime is producing extraordinary damage to both private and public ventures and driving up I.T. security spending.

Worldwide investing in information safety (a part of the broader cybersecurity market) services and products will get to more than $114 billion (USD) in 2018, a boost of 12.4% from in 2014, according to the latest forecast from Gartner, Inc. In 2019, this market is anticipated to grow by 8.7% to $124 billion.

Cybersecurity Ventures anticipates global investing on cybersecurity products or services will go beyond $1 trillion cumulatively over the five-year duration from 2017 to 2021. Taken in its entirety, we prepare for 12%-15% year-over-year cybersecurity market development through 2021.

According to Cybersecurity Ventures, global costs on cybersecurity will exceed $1 trillion cumulatively for the 5 year duration from 2017-2021.

I.T. analyst forecasts remain not able to keep pace with the remarkable increase in cybercrime, the ransomware epidemic, the refocusing of malware from P.C.s and laptops to smartphones and mobile phones, the release of billions of under-protected Internet of Things (IoT) devices, the legions of hackers-for-hire, and the more advanced cyberattacks against organizations, federal governments, educational institutions, and customers worldwide.

“Problem is (for tracking cybersecurity investing), technology titans, with the exception of IBM and Cisco Systems, do not constantly break out cybersecurity profits figures and a big cut of customer protection spending on mobile malware and virus removal and data recovery is never ever reported. Similar to firms, consumers are hanging out and money as a result of cyberattacks,” according to a story in Investors Business Daily, which assists part of the delta between spending projections from some sector experts and the trillion-dollar 5-year market forecast by Cybersecurity Ventures.

Ransomware Rising

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has defined ransomware as a brand-new business model for cybercrime, and an international event.

Ransomware, a malware which infects computer systems and limits their access to data, typically threatening permanent information destruction unless a ransom is paid, has reached epidemic volumes and is the fastest expanding cybercrime. 

In 2016, every 40 seconds, a business fell victim to a ransomware attack. The forecast is that this will rise to every 11 seconds by 2021.

Last year, the FBI estimated that the complete quantity of ransom payments was coming close to $1 billion every year.

Cybersecurity Ventures anticipates that a business will fall victim to a ransomware attack every 14 secs by 2019, and every 11 secs by 2021.

Cybersecurity sector professionals and law enforcement authorities have actually been suggesting companies not to pay ransoms. While the portion of ransom targets who pay bitcoin to cyberpunks in hopes of recovering their information seems on the decrease, the full damages prices in link to ransomware assaults are escalating.

International ransomware damage costs were predicted to go beyond $5 billion in 2017, up more than 15X from 2015. Ransomware damages are currently forecasted to cost the world $11.5 billion in 2019, and $20 billion in 2021.

Future expectations

“Every company will be hacked.” – Roger Grimes, a Computer Security Columnist for Infoworld.

The 5 most cyber-attacked markets in 2019 were healthcare, manufacturing, financial services, government agencies, and logistics, have remained mostly the same, although the ranking order has changed. Every market has gone “Tech”: AdTech (advertising and marketing), FinTech (financial services), EdTech (educational technology), GovTech (government), LegalTech (law office), etc. All these require to scale their cybersecurity.

The small business field saw a bump in cybersecurity this year. A legion of small companies woke up to the fact that they are under cyberattack, and need to take preventative security steps. Many companies with 250 or fewer employees learned the hard way that if they wait until after being hacked to deal with it, it might be too late. Nearly half of all cyberattacks target small businesses, and the amount is expected to continue to rise.

Industries aside, IoT (Internet of Things) devices were the largest technology crime driver in 2018, and all indicators are that it will stay the same in 2019 and the near future. Cisco estimates that the number of IoT devices will be 3 times as high as the global population by 2021.

Safety in Numbers

In spite of the cybercrime epidemic, innovation assures to make the world a much more secure place.

Traffic authorities see almost 300,000 lives saved over the following ten years from a substantial decrease in traffic fatalities using autonomous vehicle technology.

Crime statistics could drop by more than 20% when metropolitan sensors and cutting edge house security remote surveillance begin to work seamlessly with each other via the IoT.

Cyber engineers and entrepreneurs internationally are hard at work on brand-new services to fight and decrease cybercrime. Hundreds of top cybersecurity companies are innovating cutting edge products and producing new services in the battle against cybercrime. One of these companies is Nexusmyst. NexusMyst is the only scalable everyday cybercrime investigation management and case resolution for law enforcement agencies – from crime to conviction, powered by an A.I. based investigation assistant. 

Cybercrime is a natural outgrowth of the increasing cyberattack area, and it should be anticipated. A sensible sight of the dangers and threats we face will assist companies and customers in doing a better job to secure themselves.

Source: 2019 Official Annual Cybercrime Report from Cybersecurity Ventures