Hackers do more damage than scammers: cybercrime is the first economic crime suffered by businesses. The Pwc survey on entrepreneurs: in Italy, cybercrime is more frequent than embezzlement and fraud committed by consumers.
Hackers problems on web
Violations of computer systems are more damaging to fraud committed by consumers and misappropriation, once the main bogeys of corporate activity when under the heading of “economic crimes”. This is what emerges from the 2018 update of the Pwc survey on the economic and financial frauds suffered by the companies.
In Italy, almost one in four companies (23%) say they have suffered this category of crimes in the last two years. A figure that compares with 49% overall and with 45% of Western Europe, but our companies suffer from this point of view of an underestimation: “We have long known that corporate fraud in Italy is more widespread than usually emerges from the data – explains in the presentation of the results the partner of Pwc Alberto Beretta – in part are not even intercepted, in part are not disclosed for reasons of confidentiality and reticence.
What often does not help to effectively deal with the problem is the partial inadequacy of the tools that support companies in the timely interception and management of fraudulent phenomena.In addition, the logic of ‘watertight compartments’ prevails, ie many different approaches within the same company, depending on the type of fraud and the company function that deals with it The approach should instead be ‘holisticized and oriented towards the overall management of the phenomenon’.
As mentioned initially, within the walls of Italian companies the most common category of fraud is cybercrime (indicated by 45% of Italian respondents), followed by embezzlement (42%), fraud committed by consumers (32%) and frauds accounting (24%).
Also in this case, at a global level there is a different perception: the most declared frauds are the cases of embezzlement (45%), followed by cybercrime (31%), fraud committed by consumers (29%) and unfair commercial practices ( 28%).
While frauds committed by individuals within the organization prevail (52%), in Italy there is a sharp increase in external fraud: from 30% in 2016 to 54% in 2018, a trend that reflects the growing cyber threat and dissemination of fraud perpetrated by consumers.
Analyzing the external subjects responsible for fraud, 47% fall into the “customer” category, about a third are professional “hackers”, while 20% of cases – particularly alarming – involve intermediaries, agents (as well as suppliers), ie those subjects with whom the company maintains relationships of trust, usually on an ongoing basis. It should be noted that in 27% of cases fraud was carried out by criminal organizations.
The cybercrime is therefore dedicated to a deepening, considering that compared to the 2016 edition the frauds declared in Italy have jumped (they were declared to 20% of cases only two years ago). “This trend – Pwc notes – reflects both a concrete expansion of the phenomenon and the greater awareness of companies: confirming this, cybercrime is indicated globally (26% of respondents) and even more so in Italy (34% of respondents ) as the most serious threat for the next two years “.
What happens when a company is hit? In most cases, the objective was to damage or interrupt business processes (31%), subtract assets from the company (29%) or implement forms of extortion (25%).