Nigeria ranks 5th in global cybercrime index | #cybercrime | #infosec

Nigeria has been ranked 5th  in a global report on sources of cybercrime activities, coming behind Russia, which ranked number one, and Ukraine, China, and the United States, which occupied the second, third, and fourth positions respectively.

The report, which was described as the first-ever World Cybercrime Index, was produced by researchers from the Department of Sociology, University of Oxford, and the University of New South Wales, Canberra, identifies the globe’s major cybercrime hotspots by ranking the most significant sources of cybercrime at a national level.

Other countries that make the top 10 list of cybercrime hotspots include Romania, North Korea, United Kingdom, Brazil, and India.

Tracing cybercrime sources

While noting that the geography of cybercrime offenders and the corresponding level of ‘cyber criminality’ present within each country has been largely unknown, one of the report’s authors, Dr Jonathan Lusthaus explains:

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  • “Due to the illicit and anonymous nature of their activities, cybercriminals cannot be easily accessed or reliably surveyed. They are actively hiding.
  • “If you try to use technical data to map their location, you will also fail, as cybercriminals bounce their attacks around internet infrastructure across the world. The best means we have to draw a picture of where these offenders are actually located is to survey those whose job it is to track these people.”

Also commenting on the report, Dr. Miranda Bruce, of the University of Oxford and UNSW Canberra, said:

  • “The research that underpins the Index will help remove the veil of anonymity around cybercriminal offenders, and we hope that it will aid the fight against the growing threat of profit-driven cybercrime.
  • “By continuing to collect this data, we’ll be able to monitor the emergence of any new hotspots and it is possible early interventions could be made in at-risk countries before a serious cybercrime problem even develops.
  • “For the first time, we have reliable data on the location of cybercriminals, and we also have a way to measure their impact. Government agencies and private enterprises tasked with tackling cybercrime now have a much better understanding of the scale of the problem in their own backyard.”

How the data was gathered

According to the report, the data that underpins the Index was gathered through a survey of leading cybercrime experts from around the world.

Participants were asked to consider five major categories of cybercrime and nominate the countries that they considered to be the most significant sources of each of these types of crime.

The five categories were:

  • Technical products/services (such as malware)
  • Attacks and extortion
  • Data/identity theft (such as hacking or phishing)
  • Scams (such as business email compromise or online auction fraud)
  • Cashing out/money laundering (such as credit card fraud)

The survey then asked participants to rank each nominated country according to the impact, professionalism, and technical skills of its offenders.

The results indicate that a relatively small number of countries house the greatest cybercriminal threats. Six countries – China, Russia, Ukraine, the US, Romania, and Nigeria – appeared in the top ten of each category of cybercrime.

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