As the technology to fight cyber crime advances, cyber criminals are becoming more organized. Recent studies show that more and more cyber criminals are operating in such ways that it almost looks like they took examples from big business.
Dark Net is home to a wide range of things, from information, to illegal goods. More and more hacker stores are popping up in marketplaces, forums, and .onion addresses themselves. Black hat hacking teams are becoming departmentalized, focusing on teamwork, collaboration tools, extensive training, and are even using service agreements between customers and software providers of Dark Net.
“When you start to see malware kits that have customer service agreements and warranties associate with them, you know you’ve moved into a pretty professional space,” Nathaniel J Gleicher, former Director for the National Security Council’s cyber security policy.
Cyber crime has become a huge market in its own right. More and more people are forming Black hat businesses with the same goals; making big money by hacking. With today’s easy access to malware, ransomware, and more, it’s no wonder why the hacking industry has grown to the level it is presently.
“There’s been a substantial amount of improvement and innovation in the way attackers go after after networks and, as cyber crime has professionalized, you’ve seen individuals develop a particular set of skills which fit into a broader network,” Gleicher stated. “You have people who are managing and distributing credit card information, people who are cracking bank accounts, people who are managing remote access tool kits to people who specialize in social engineering. They have very specific skill sets.”
Reports show it’s not just gangs of hackers anymore, it’s hackers, customer service, and most of the same departments you would see in companies such as Apple, Microsoft and the like.
“Advanced cyber crime groups now mirror legitimate organizations in the way they operate, with networks, partners, associates, re-sellers, and vendors. Some groups even deploy call center operations to ensure maximum impact for their scamming efforts. They’re very much acting like big business. We’re seeing that they very much collaborate and communicate via encrypted instant messaging systems,” Chief strategist for EMEA, Sian John said.
Hacking enterprises have also instated terms and conditions as it is becoming an bigger, more professional operation. Cyber criminals are now leasing out their software and making even more than If they just sold it out right.
A cyber security consultant for Trend Micro had this to say:
“The franchises take that technology, but rather than hosting it in the country where it’s being developed, they’ll ask the developers if they can take some of their services and host them in places they can’t get to and let them take a cut. It’s exactly the same as an independent software company. They have their own channel program.”
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