Cybercrime Just Became A “Battleground”

( Cyberspace has just become a “battleground,” as cybercrime is up 13% with over 76,000 reports from 2021 to 2022, according to a report from The Epoch Times. The numbers are so high that it is equivalent to one crime being reported every eight minutes contrasted with one report every seven minutes in the previous financial year.

The most prevalent types of crime, making up 54% of all reports, are listed in Australia as fraud (26.9 percent), shopping (12.4 percent), and online banking (12.6 percent), according to the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) in its annual cyber threat report released November 4.

The least frequent crime is ransomware, making up 0.59% of all reports. While ransomware attacks occurred less often, they remain one of the most destructive forms of cybercrime.

Ransomware is a form of digital blackmail where hackers demand that the victim pays a ransom to access his/her personal files lest their files are publicly published. One of the major attacks occurred last year when U.S.-based Colonial Pipeline’s IT network was hacked.

The attack temporarily halted the transportation of gas and cut off nearly half of the east coast’s supply, according to a May 2021 report from conservative magazine American Pigeon. The pipeline, which was shut down for four days, operates a 5,500-mile network from Texas to New Jersey and carries nearly half of the east coast’s gas.

The report also showed that government sectors were the most likely to be targeted, followed by the health care and social assistance sectors.

“Cyberspace has become a battleground,” the report said, “Cyber is increasingly the domain of warfare, as seen in Russia’s use of malware designed to destroy data and prevent computers from booting in Ukraine.”

“In July 2021, the Australian government publicly attributed exploitation of Microsoft Exchange vulnerabilities to China’s Ministry of State Security,” it continued.

The report comes after multiple major public companies were allegedly attacked, such as Medibank, Australia’s larger health insurer, Optus, the second largest telecommunications company, and EnergyAustralia, one of the three largest energy companies.