In an earlier post, I shared my rallying cry to help enterprises transition from being the hunted to the hunter by deploying proactive and resilient strategies. At the heart of this approach is developing a thorough understanding of enterprise risks, which is necessary to proactively secure critical data and infrastructure.
While most enterprises are becoming more aware of threats like ransomware and DDoS attacks, very few know that they are also at risk of economic espionage; much less of associated tools like espionage-as-a-service offerings that attackers can easily avail of in the Deep Web.
Countries like the United States that spend on average 2–3% of their GDP every year on R&D for new products, services, or technologies stand to lose billions of dollars to economic espionage. U.S. companies alone lose US$300 billion to intellectual property theft each year. In the United Kingdom, the total cost of cybercrime is estimated at £27 billion each year, £9.2 billion of which could be attributed to intellectual property theft while £7 billion accounted for losses due to corporate espionage. Even worse, the total cost of cybercrime (data theft) worldwide is expected to reach US$2 trillion by 2019.
Any company, regardless of industry and size, is a potential target. Trade secrets, blueprints of new works in progress, and any other kind of confidential corporate data can fetch huge profits for hackers for hire.
Deep Web ad for corporate-account-hacking services; prices depend on the job’s complexity
Given the crime’s lucrative nature, espionage-as-a-service providers or hackers for hire will continue to prosper. So what should companies do?
Enterprises should secure their data and networks by employing a connected threat defense strategy that protects endpoints, networks, and hybrid cloud infrastructure through a wide mix of security technologies that work hand-in-hand. Trend Micro™ Smart Protection Suites helps enterprises do just that—detect breaches and mitigate threats. Add to that XGen™ endpoint security, which provides cross-generational threat protection fused with global threat intelligence to provide maximum protection with minimum impact.
For more in-depth information on and strategies to mitigate and/or address espionage-as-a-service and related attacks—what espionage as a service is, how it affects enterprises, and how to defend against it—read our latest executive brief, “Espionage as a Service.”