Cyber Criminals: Who Are They & What Motivates Them?
While we commonly think of cyber criminals as singular individuals bunkered up in a basement, the truth is that attackers are often much more sophisticated. Let’s examine the most common threats to your business:
Insiders — While your employees are some of your best assets, they can also be one of your greatest threats. In some cases, well-meaning employees accidentally put confidential information at risk through careless cyber security practices. Other times, disgruntled employees will vandalize assets or steal proprietary data to get back at your organization.
Organized Crime — Organized cyber criminals are primarily interested in money. These groups often seek personally identifiable information like social security numbers, health records, credit card details, and banking information. They then hold this information hostage through ransomware or sell it outright on the dark web to turn a profit.
Hacktivists — Hacktivists operate with a political agenda, often carrying out high-profile attacks to distribute propaganda or damage organizations they disagree with. Hacktivists typically fall under the category of cyber vandalism and look to damage reputations or steal incriminating information.
Government-Sponsored Groups — These cyber criminals are well-funded and are typically motivated by political, economic, technical, or military agendas. Government-sponsored attacks are often very sophisticated, and these groups target highly sensitive and competitive proprietary data. These types of attacks often use multiple hacking strategies occurring over a long period of time.