Cybercriminals: A case study for decentralised organisations?

A study shows that stereotypes of organised criminals are wide of the mark.

by Adam Gale

If your mental image of a cybercriminal is Don Corleone keyboard-mashing code in his mother’s basement, you may be in need of an update. 

Research published in the International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology has found that hackers, who are globally responsible for between $445bn and $600bn of economic damage every year, instead correspond to a rather different stereotype.

“It’s not the ‘Tony Soprano mob boss type’ who’s ordering crime against financial institutions,” according to co-author Thomas Holt, a professor at Michigan State University, but rather “loose groups of individuals who come together to do one thing, do it really well… then disappear”.

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