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'Cybercrime cost SA over R3.42bn in 2013'

By , IT in government editor
South Africa , 29 Jan 2015

'Cybercrime cost SA over R3.42bn in 2013'

Incidents of cybercrime in South Africa are on the rise, an official told ITWeb Africa.

Doros Hadjizenonos, sales manager at Check Point South Africa said many of their customers are seeing an increase in cybercrime.

Check Point Software Technologies is an Israeli headquartered company and provides hardware and software products for IT security.

According to Hadjizenonos criminals choose cybercrime because it is an easier crime to commit as the person is usually sitting behind a computer and the computers do the work for them.

"It's becoming a lot easier and criminals are criminals, they will take the easiest route," said Hadjizenonos.

"There are websites that offer a service to take a known vulnerability and mutate that so that it can't be detected by anti-virus. They even have a 24 hour support line," he said.

Hadjizenonos added that they are seeing a rise in mobile exploits as well as the costs thereof.

Although he could only speak on the global figures he said that a single mobile security incident can cost an organisation around $250,000.

"Over ten years ago there was one malware found on a Nokia Symbian phone, but we are now talking about millions of exploits on phones," he said.

"We are seeing that as a big rise and will probably continue in 2015 because we are putting more and more of our data on these mobile devices.

"I'm using my phone for business as well as pleasure but I have a lot of confidential data on my phone and if this got onto the internet it could be damaging to me as well as to my organisation," he explained.

According to Symantec's Norton report in 2013 incidents of cybercrime collectively cost South Africans over R3.42 billion.

After China and Russia the southern African nation was the third most hard-hit country when it comes to cybercrime, said the report.

73% of South African respondents indicated that they experienced cybercrime in their lifetime, according to the report.

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