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Understanding the Role of Big Data in Cyber Crime

Information is one of the most valuable commodities of the modern world. Cyber criminals are desperate to get their hands on the private servers and networks of a business to mine for data. Stolen data has become a real problem for businesses, individuals, and law enforcement. It’s important to know about the current threats and the ways to prevent them.

Why is data so valuable to hackers?

Criminals often use personal information and financial records to conduct fraud. While some hackers steal information for the sake of exploiting it directly, others steal it with the intention of selling it in an illegal online marketplace. Criminals can use stolen information to open credit cards, take out loans, or even receive medical care. Most criminals can get what they want and cover their tracks before a security breach has even been detected. Of course, some hackers have reasons that are far more nefarious. There is always the possibility that a hacker is infiltrating a network for the sake of retrieving information that can be used for blackmail purposes or to publicize confidential information. Big Data in the hands of a hacker means infiltration on a grand scale. This can be from targeting businesses to medical institutions.

Businesses of All Sizes Are Being Targeted

It can be easy to think that only large, high-profile businesses are being targeted by hackers. Headlines about the latest attacks in the worlds of healthcare, commerce, and finance seem to dominate the news on a weekly basis. However, the reality is that nobody is immune to cyber threats. Some hackers intentionally target small businesses because enterprises with smaller profiles tend to have networks that are less secure. A small business with between 50 and 250 employees may not see itself as a target. Thus, many IT professionals and network managers incorrectly assume that sophisticated security measures aren’t necessary or that currently adopted practices are enough. This perception couldn’t be farther from reality. Criminals don’t care if the social security numbers, personal records or credit card details they’re stealing come from a major corporation or a small business. In fact, many criminals are increasingly targeting small businesses because they offer the same amount of reward for far less risk. The general assumption among cyber criminals is that small businesses don’t have the resources to prevent, detect or fight back against sophisticated cyber-attacks.

Big Data & Attack Prevention

IT professionals and network managers can’t just cross their fingers and hope that their networks stay safe. Anticipation and preparation play huge roles in keeping networks safe. Did you know that Big Data can be used to prevent attacks by detecting and analyzing threats based on usual and unusual patterns of activity? You can think of a network as a human body with consistent vital signs. A sudden spike in blood pressure is a signal that something is wrong. Big Data works the same way because it can be analyzed to measure current activity against a reliable baseline. Data streaming platforms offered by companies like DataTorrent allows enterprises of all sizes to take advantage of not only real time data streaming but analytics as well. An enterprise can get started by having its network analyzed to discover the type of measures that would work best for administrators and users. Taking advantage of Big Data streaming platforms is not only beneficial in understanding your target audience as a business, but it also helps to understand your company’s health. Monitoring in real-time allows for fast action in prevention of cyber-crime.

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