Sunday, April 29, 2012

Recalibrating Cybercime Re-Calibration

I stand corrected (or a least adjusted).

As long-time readers may recognize, I am more than ready to admit error. So, re: this recent SGSB POST on the costs of cybercrime, here's what I guy who knows (substantially) more than I do had to say:
I agree that the NYT authors brought a “fresh perspective” but if a policy wonk read that article and considered it as their ONLY source of information on the topic, I think the wonk would have been duped! (I should copyright that clause!) Take at look at the book Fatal System Error. The Russian mafia guys were making a ton of money off of cyber crime and derivatives. Also, research I’d done years ago had the average “salary” for East European cybercriminals at $300,000 per day (untaxed). Look at Albert Gonzales. He made a ton of money before he got bagged by the FBI. Another example of the monetary benefits of cybercrime. So, I agree the NYT brought some “new” perspective but I think they are missing the point as to why cybercrime is real and financially acceptable.
Acknowledged. But in my own defense (does that mean I'm being defensive?), if  policy wonk read only the article in question and formed their opinion thusly, then they'd be a pretty lame wonk and maybe not a wonk at all. Not sure what the minimum requirements for wonk status are, but I bet that reading one thing is not enough.

In sum, the dollar costs of cybercrime may be overstated or grossly over-represented in some analyses. But that doesn't mean cybercrime should be considered any less damaging. Please proceed on the current course until further notice.