In the following essay, the perceived reward which may influence someone to commit Cyber Crime will be discussed in depth. Cyber Crime is defined as a planned and well-structured crime in which cybercriminals make a beneficial gain of the opportunities accessible by the World Wide Web. They are numerous groups of people from many different countries with specialist skills who target various sectors of businesses stealing personal information. Specialists groups use skills such as phishing, ad clicker, keylogging to target those who innocently use technology unaware of the potential security breach which could strike at any time. A discussion of the nine models of cybercriminals will be analysed in further depth, what lures people to commit cyber-crime. Punishments which these criminals face and finally agencies who are hunting down these cybercriminals to prevent further attacks in the future.
Rogers, Smoak and Jian (2006) classify cybercrime into nine different models. Novice, Cyber Punks, Hachtivist or Political Activists, Thieves, Virus Writers, Internals, Old Guard Hackers, Professional Group and Cyber-Terrorist. The novice criminals have very limited programming skills. They do not have great computing knowledge. These criminals can only participate in cyberattacks when they have toolkits. The only motive for these criminals is predominantly seeking media attention. As well as the novices, the next in the hierarchy is the Cyber Punks. These criminals have advanced technical skills and are able to write and program their own software. There are conversant about the systems and networks they usually attack. These criminals usually engage in telecommunication fraud and steal individuals credit card information to steal money and personal data.
Hachtivists are criminals who defend their behaviour on ethical grounds like political issues. Though they actions are incomprehensible and does not incline towards political and lean more towards revenge, power and greed (Rogers, Siegfried and Tide, 2006). Thieves are resourceful well-educated and knowledgeable technologists who take advantage of large organisations poor security arrangements. The next stage in the hierarchy are the Virus Writers. These individuals are those who specialise in writing code. These individuals mentor and support Novices develop their skills. Virus Writers strive to seek respect and status. The above-mentioned group of people are exploit malware such as Trojans to commit cyber-crimes and cause outrage from individual’s users to large organisations.
Internals are cyber criminals who are infuriated and angered ex-employees and in some cases employees. These criminals are out to seek revenge on companies which they have worked for. Old Guard Hackers are usually offenders who appear not to have the purpose to cause offence and commit a crime and are impartial in intellectual activities. This group are impertinence to personal property. Professional Group are very exclusive in their work. These criminals usually to hire guns and participate in secret intelligence work. These individuals have access to some of the most high-tech equipment to complete their work. Finally, Cyber Terrorist are well established and well-funded to complete cyber-attacks that may be governmentally motivated. These individuals are top of the hierarchy and are the most specialised to complete some of the biggest security breaches possible and cause the most outrage (Rogers, Siegfried, and Tidke, 2006).
For the large majority of cybercriminals, money is the key motivator which inspires them to commit cyber-crimes. As revealed by Get Safe Online and Action Fraud that a colossal £10.9 billion vanished as a direct result of fraud crimes, primarily caused by cyber-crime in 2015/2016 (Action Fraud Police, 2016). From this, it can be inferred that having the opportunity to make such financial gain can encourage even the novices to commit cyber-crimes. Recently revealed by the NCSC, around $81 Million Dollars were stolen from a Bangladesh Bank in February 2016. With such large amounts of money being available progressively the number of attacks are increasing. According to the Global Threat Intelligence Report (2016) from The Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation (NTT Group), they concluded that an astounding 77 percent of businesses are unprepared for cyber-attacks (NTT Group, 2016).
In addition to money being a motivator for cyber criminals, many criminals are lured by the prospect of a job opportunity with large organisations such as Uber, Microsoft, Google and Facebook. It is comprehended that many of these well-established and influential organisations are offering hackers schemes such as a bug bounty program. An illustration of this is Uber who offer to pay $10,000 dollars to those who find a critical bug, they advise that this shall increase with bonuses as hackers continue to find further bugs in their applications (Newstex, 2016). In 2013, Microsoft which is known as one of most significant and dominant tech giant in the market publicised that they paid a hacker £62,760 to find security flaws in their products on the market (Gander, 2013). Therefore, hackers are being offered considerable amounts of money working as white hat hackers, without the risk of facing imprisonment, thus some criminals are then lured away from the idea of working as black hat hackers, and cease their continued support with working with some of the most commanding cyber gangs and prefer to earn equally respectable amounts of money working as white hackers (Newstex, 2016). A black hat hacker is defined as someone who hacks to cause maliciousness and outrage and those who hack for personal gain. These intelligent groups of individuals write programs to hack into systems and networks from an individual home user to large corporation (Moore, 2005).
Furthermore, some cyber criminals are lured by the celebrity status of being a high-tech criminal and the promise of economic gain. A report produced by McAfee in 2006 revealed that adolescents as young as 14 are being attracted into cyber-crimes by knowledgeable and proficient criminals with the promise of newly found fame. The McAfee Virtual Criminology Report 2006 advised that cyber-criminals are utilising new tactics to employ the next generation of hackers and malware authors. Criminals are dynamically approaching students and new graduates in the IT technology field to enlist a renewed wealth of cyber-skills to add to their groups of black hat hackers. (PR Newswire, 2006). Though it is understood that majority of hackers employed are males. Jordan (2013 cited in Jordan and Taylor 1998, page 767-8) views coincide with this theory. Jordan affirms “… females who compute would rather spend their time building a good system, than breaking into someone else’s system…” (Jordan, 2013, p35).
Cyber criminals face punishments for their crimes when they are arrested by government agencies. These punishments vary by the severity of the security breach which has taken place. It is understood that these punishments differ from country to country.