A report prepared by former U.S. intelligence officials warns that security attacks on computers will worsen in the years to come as hackers adopt more sophisticated techniques to pilfer data from servers used by retailers, energy companies, and financial companies. The report touches upon scenarios that talk about how an annual trade theft of USD 445 billion will only go from being bad to worse.
In their outlook, officials who have prepared the report state predict ‘increased losses and slower growth.’ Their report doesn’t find a credible scenario where there are chances of cybercrime losses diminishing. The report was published by the Center for Strategic and International Studies based in Washington. Officials paint a grim picture when they say that the damage done by hackers will be hard to trace. In the words of Stewart Baker, the study’s lead author, ‘cybercrime is here to stay’. Baker, the former general counsel of the National Security Agency (NSA) during the 1990s, has also served as an assistant secretary in the Department of Homeland Security.
The report states that nearly 40 million people in the United States have had their personal information leaked or stolen in 2013 alone. An oil company, whose name was not mentioned, had suffered business losses to the tune of millions of dollars after hackers broke into its critical oilfield exploration data. The report was sponsored by McAfee Inc., a network security company. CSIS is a non-for-profit organization based in Washington and specializes in policy research. The report states that incidences of cybercrime could cost nearly 0.8% of the global GDP.