Mon, 22 Oct 2018

Ireland faces massive under reporting of cyber crime

By Sheetal Sukhija, Dublin News
13 Jan 2018, 08:32 GMT+10

DUBLIN, Ireland - At a conference on Cyber Fraud in a Digital Age at the University College Cork on Friday, leading experts revealed that less than 5 percent of cybercrime is reported to gardai in the country.

At the conference, officials admitted that under-reporting leaves authorities unable to inform the wider community of the problems.

On Friday, Det Supt Mick Gubbins of the Garda Cyber Crime Bureau appealed to company owners and individuals to contact them when they find themselves under attack by criminals.

Det Supt Gubbins reassured that support services are ready and in place for people impacted by cybercrime.

Pointing out that one-third of Irish and Northern Irish businesses have suffered a data security breach in the past year, Det Supt Gubbins said, “Of the cyber-dependent crime, very little of that is reported. I would say it is less than 5 percent. It is not just an Irish phenomenon. It is a European and global phenomenon. We would like to let them know that the guards have the ability to investigate cyber-dependent incidents.”

He explained that companies do not approach gardaí to report attacks on their systems, which prevents the authorities from sharing their experiences with the wider community.

According to the Gardai official, cybercrime costs almost 1 percent of global income, with the money being redirected from legitimate businesses to organized crime structures.

Det Supt Gubbins stated that at a consumer level, Irish people used to be very good at minding their own business. 

He added that in the modern age, people now document their whole lives on Facebook and Twitter.

Det Supt Gubbins was quoted as saying, “What you don’t realize is that you are giving information to the criminals to create a spear phishing campaign to do some more social engineering to get into your circle of trust to get access. I am aware of a guy whose Gmail account was accessed, and criminals accessed his email to make a payment to a bank account. It is important to use different passwords at all times.”

He added that in most cases, people are ignorant about how vulnerable they are. 

Det Supt Gubbins said, “Where there is a new device, where there is a new technology, it is obviously going to be an avenue that the criminals are going to exploit.”

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