Online crime up 32%, says report

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LONDON – A cybercrime report released by IT security consultancy Garlik has found that online financial crime in the UK rose by 32% to 207,000 reported crimes in 2006.

The rise is attributed to an increase in cardholder-not-present crimes, which accounted for 49% of all reported crimes. Cybercrime is now more prevalent than conventional fraud. Its broad definition also hides the wide variety of crimes, which include identity theft, financial fraud, offences against the person, computer misuse and sexual offences.

Finjan, a California-based provider of secure web gateway products, praises the report. “Law enforcement agencies have a major battle on their hands," says Yuval Ben-Itzhak, Finjan's chief technology officer. He states that IT managers need to be aware of this latest evolution in crimeware because they can no longer rely on law enforcement to deter electronic criminals. Finjan’s own research stresses that attempts to pattern malicious code and create signatures, or to categorise known malicious sites, are “too little, too late” to adequately protect from today’s web threats. “The way to detect modern malicious code is to be able to understand in real time what the code intends to do, before it does it,” says Ben-Itzhak.

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