In the war on Digital Crime, are we ever going to win?

The bottom line, in the war on digital crime is – we are losing.  Smart IT programmer drawing information technology diagram

A couple of years ago it was a tight race.  But, no longer.   In fact they are now lapping us for the fourth time.

What happened?

The digital criminal got smarter, more ruthless, more targeted and more persistent.  They learned their lessons and watched what was happening.  True Darwinism at its best!   The stupid got caught, the clever ones didn’t.

They invested in technology!    Unlike us, they found out what technology could do, not what it was designed to do.   They took it apart, found its flaws.   They found other flaws!

  • Our systems had flaws,
  • Our procedures had flaws,
  • Even our people had flaws and made mistakes.

We failed to notice them but they didn’t.

The engineers who developed our new technology were more interested in time to market, convenience and profit, than security.

We are now reaping what they sowed.

The digital criminal is happy with that!

The everyday population didn’t get smarter.  We sat on our hands and hoped the problem of digital crime would go away.  We hoped that the engineers would create secure systems like they use to.   They didn’t!

The business world did not get smarter.   They invested in platitudes of “it will never happen to me” or “We are too small to be a target” or “we have nothing worth stealing“.

Digital Crime didn’t go away!

The business world failed to see that anyone with an Internet connection, a half decent computer and a little know how can become a world class hacker.

Then the criminals changed to a business model and moved lock, stock and malware barrel to the internet.   The signs are there, we just ignore them.

I have seen 18 year old’s, compromise systems during a red team penetration test with just a USB keyboard, a USB thumb drive and their fingers.   It certainly puts digital security into perspective and shows just how vulnerable we really are!

The basic training drills that world class athletes and professionals do to become the best they can be would not be possible without the basics.   A world class swimmer, trains for hundreds of miles to make sure they are ready for that one race.

We no longer do the basics!

The fundamentals!

The fundamentals of digital security!

The digital criminals can see our weaknesses, we cannot!  

So, if you want to be the next compromised system just keep going the way we are going.   The digital criminal doesn’t mind.   If fact they are ecstatic that we do not see the problems.  We have to take the necessary steps to make it harder for them.

IT’S EVERYONE’S PROBLEM!

Not just a select few within an organization.    Everyone has to be involved in the digital protection of the entity.   Unless everyone is involved there can be no digital protection.

The digital world is now running the real world.

When the largest organized crime gangs in the world see the potential and act on it, they are obviously seeing something that the business world is not.   To them it is more profitable and less risky than prostitution and drugs.

They can be anywhere in the world and steal millions of dollars without exposing themselves to law enforcement.

Even better, everyone who uses the digital world cannot see the potential to have your normal world turned upside down by just a click of a mouse, they can and they are very happy with our lack of knowledge.

This is the world we live in, if we don’t change and take up the batten, if we don’t look at digital crime as a problem, they will continue to win and we will continue to lose.

Roger Smith is the CEO of R & I ICT Consulting Services, Amazon #1 selling author on Cybercrime, author of the Digital Security Toolbox and author of the SME Digital Security Framework.   He is a Speaker, Author, Teacher and Educator on digital crime and how to protect yourself from the digital world.

Roger Smith, is an educator. Teaching students at ADFA (UNSW) and showing them how vulnerable they are to cybercrime.

He is also CEO at R & I ICT Consulting Services Pty Ltd, an Amazon #1 author on Cybercrime and founder of the SME Security Framework. He is a Consultant who specialises in inexpensive and highly effective security strategies for small and medium businesses and not for profit organisations.

He has developed and authored the SME Security Framework and the Security Policy Training Course which are considered to be the definitive guides to helping SME's protect their organisation using the principles of Technology, Management, Adaptability and Compliance.