Almost any idiot with malicious intentions can jump into the cybercrime arena thanks to ‘Crime-as-a-Service’ tools that lower the entry barriers into cybercrime; wannabe cyber-criminals who lack technical expertise can simply buy the tools and skills needed. In fact, “Crime-as-a-Service business models” and anonymization have helped many traditional organized crime groups move to cybercrime, according to the 2014 Internet Organized Crime Threat Assessment (iOCTA) published today. It’s easy to do and difficult to be busted since “criminals in cyberspace do not need to be close to the crime scene, they might never even travel to the target country, and can attack a large number of victims globally with minimum effort and risk by hiding their identity.”
Let’s kick the acronyms out of the way. The 92-page report (pdf) came out of the European Police Office, known as Europol. More specifically, the report that talks about increased commercialization of cybercrime was published by Europol’s European Cybercrime Center (EC3). It also looks at the latest trends, future risks, emerging threats and recommendations for law enforcement and policy makers in the EU. Granted, the report provides an “analysis of the latest trends and the current impact of cybercrime within the EU,” but geographical boundaries mean little when it comes to cybercrime; attacks can affect people in the US or anywhere else in the world.