Dec 17, 2015

Top Five Countries with Highest Percentages of Cybercrime

Often labeled white collar crime, cyber crime takes place in the intangible, online web-scape of the Internet, and is generally related to any activity that breaches or violates the rights or personal information of another online environment member. Since billions of dollars in online transactions take place every day along the path of the World Wide Web, even more so during holiday seasons, it is no surprise that cyber bandits have become all too prevalent in modern life.

Cybercrime is not isolated to one single group, ethnicity, gender or race. These faceless outlaws do not discriminate, and though this is a global problem, some countries are more likely to suffer the wrath of cyber thieves more so than others. So which countries in the world community make the top five list of most likely to be hacked, what kinds of cyber crime are rampant in these nations, and most importantly, what can online community members do to protect themselves and their information while connected to the web?

In the Top 5

Coming in at No. 5 is the country of Brazil. According to Symantec's ranking of the top 20 countries experiencing cybercrime, based on the percentage of malicious computer activity detected in each country and other telling variables, Brazil topped at four percent in the malicious computer activity arena.

Notably, Brazil has more phishing website hosts than any other country in the top five list. These phishing websites obtain and store personal information, making identity theft more likely to occur. To guard against such cyber offenses, online users should not offer up any personal information to any unauthorized webpage, nor should users store and save passwords on their computers.

Sneaking into the No. 4 spot was Great Britain with five percent of the recorded malicious computer activity tracked globally, and Germany, with six percent, settled into the rank of No. 3. Germany is also ranked 12th in 20 in the prevalence of malicious code within their online environments.

Malicious code is computer language designed to steal personal information. This kind of malware snakes its way into users' computers or electronic devices through opening unsolicited emails and clicking suspicious links. Once they have installed, opened and begun to run, this malware transmits your personal information through the open channels of the Internet computers that are normally located thousands of miles away from your location, where your information is stored and later sold to counterfeiters. Protecting against such aggressive violations involves close monitoring of your identity details and setting up credit alerts in case of infraction.

Battle for No. 1

From here the cyber criminals favorite playgrounds become obvious. Jumping up three percent to a total of nine percent malicious computer activity, China slides into the runner-up ranking, and finally, with a whopping 23 percent of recorded cybercrime activity based on percentage of recorded malicious computer activity: The United States of America. Ironically, the U.S. is also ranked No. 1 on the list of countries in which cybercrime originates.

Notice that the list of nations experiencing the highest levels of cybercrime are not third-world countries; these are first-world, wealthy, highly established nations. This just goes to show the undeniable reach of cyber criminals and the great need for protection from white collar crime in the modern age.

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