Cyber crime is fastest growing economic crime

Cyber crime is perceived as the fastest growing fraud risk (40%), followed by bribery and corruption (36%)around the globe.

The UK has seen a double-digit rise in economic crime against corporates in the past two years, with 55% of organisations affected up 11% since 2014 and well above the US (38%) and China (28%). Globally, the economic crime rate has remained largely static at 36%, according to the survey of more than 6,000 respondents in 115 countries.

The survey found that 60 % of economic crime in the UK was committed by external perpetrators, up from 56% in 2014. While there was a decline in economic crime perpetrated by employees (31%), there was an 11% increase in fraud committed by senior management to 18%.

Software security provider McAfee has reported cyber crime is a growth industry with high returns and low risks. The company estimates the likely annual cost to the global economy from cyber crime is more than $400bn, a figure higher than the national income of most countries. Yet governments and businesses tend to underestimate how much risk they face from cyber crime and how quickly this risk can develop.

Although governments have a role in making cyberspace safe, which many are only now waking up to, regulations and law enforcement cannot keep pace with the speed of technology, and organizations need to consider what they may need to do to counter possible the effects of a data breach

The rise of cyber crime, the report said, is in stark contrast with some of the traditional forms of economic crime, including asset misappropriation and procurement fraud, which have declined. Just over half of UK organisations say they expect to be the victim of cyber crime in the next two years, suggesting it will become the UK’s largest economic crime.

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