Cybercrime Will Cost Business $8 Trillion Over Next 5 Years

Nearly 3 billion customer data records expected to be stolen in 2017, according to a new report by Juniper Research.

Criminal data breaches will cost businesses a total of $8 trillion over the next 5 years, due to higher levels of connectivity without an appreciation of the additional actions necessary to make such systems secure, according to a new report by Juniper Research.

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The new research, The Future of Cybercrime & Security: Enterprise Threats & Mitigation 2017-2022, forecasts that the number of personal data records stolen by cyber criminals will reach 2.8 billion in 2017, almost doubling to 5 billion in 2020, despite new and innovative cyber security solutions emerging. Cyber security problems become acute when businesses integrate new and old systems without regard to overall network security, according to the report.

SMEs Pose Key Risk

Juniper found that small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are particularly at risk from cyber attacks, spending on average less than $4,000 per year on cyber security measures in 2017, which is expected to increase only marginally in real terms over the next five years. These firms also tend to run older software, which WannaCry and other recent cyber attacks have exploited.

The research highlights the need for companies to put more money into cyber security and system upkeep, which should be treated as a vital element of workplace safety.

“The attacks on hospital infrastructure show that inadequate cyber security can now cost lives as well as money,” remarked research author James Moar. “Businesses of all sizes need to find the time and budget to upgrade and secure their systems, or lose the ability to perform their jobs safely, or at all.”

Ransomware-as-a-Service Is Here

The research’s threat analysis shows that ransomware is becoming a far more advanced form of malware, as ransoming stored data and devices becomes easier and more valuable than stealing financial details.

Juniper expects ransomware to rapidly develop into simple-to-use toolkits, the same way banking Trojans developed into “products” that required little or no programming knowledge to use.

The whitepaper, Cybercrime & the Internet of Threats 2017, is available to download from the Juniper Research website along with further details of the new research.