Did You Know: Crazy Facts About Hacking

Did you know that every day, over 600,000 Facebook accounts are compromised by hackers?

There’s so much personally identifiable information (PII) online these days that the FBI has even created a cyber crime “most wanted” list, which currently numbers 19. At the top of the list is Evgeniy Mikhailovich Bogachev, who was responsible for the ransomware called “GameOverZeus,” which stole over $100 million from victims, according to Ad Week.

That isn’t even the worst of it. MyDoom, an email worm that gave hackers remote access to victims’ computers, has caused over $38.5 billion worth of damage—the highest ever. Since 2010, the annual cost of cyber attacks has risen 96 percent.

Email isn’t criminals’ favorite method of scamming, though; these days, social media is all the rage. More than 64 percent of Internet users, or 1.6 billion people, have accounts, making social engineering the prime choice for scams. One hacking ring in Eastern Europe targeted bank employees, nabbing $1 billion from 100 branches in 30 countries over a two-year period.

Unfortunately, if you’ve been the victim of hacking or another cyber crime, the chances of getting your money back are slim. 68 percent of funds lost in a scam were unrecoverable, and this is even if you discover the attack in time. On average, it takes 170 days to even detect a cyber crime!

Cyber attacks don’t just affect individuals. 59 percent of employees steal sensitive company data when they quit or are fired, making many hacking cases “inside jobs.”

There’s also been a massive increase in the number of cyber attacks since 2010: a 176 percent jump, which averages out to 138 successful scams per week. Want to learn more? You can head over to IP Viking, a map that sets up “honeypot” traps for hackers in order to track live cyber attacks. Check it out here.

Cyber crime may seem scary, but the more you know, the more you can protect yourself. You can sign up for BBB Scam Stopper (bbb.org/scamstopper) to stay up-to-date on fraud alerts, and check out BBB’s tips for protecting your identity online.

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About Elizabeth Holtan

Elizabeth is an award-winning writer and public relations professional, and works as a social media marketing consultant for the Council of Better Business Bureaus. She holds an M.S. from Syracuse University's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications. Follow along on Twitter @elizholtan.