The Economics of Cyber-Attacks

How to provide State of the Art Protection against Real World Threats

by Mike O’Malley

We live in a world where increasing numbers of complex cyber breach tools are available on the Darknet. But what is the Darknet and how do we protect against it? The Darknet is an anonymous and obfuscated section of the internet where criminals can exchange information, tools and money to carry out attacks with little or no traceability. The Darknet provides a service marketplace where criminals can do many of the same things that law-abiding citizens do every day. Criminals search the internet (anonymously). They exchange emails with other criminals and prospective customers, they read news on the latest opensource tools available to perform effective attacks. They even have an online marketplace where cyber-attack services can be ordered and placed into your online shopping cart. In fact, a Darknet marketplace recently advertised $7,500 to rent the now notorious Mirai botnet — the same botnet used to generate a several hundred gigabit multi-vector attack that took down the services of Amazon, BBC, HBO, Netflix, PayPal, Spotify, and many others in October 2016.

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