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CSG Blog

The Darknet: The Illegal Tech Black Market in the Gutters of the Internet

Posted by Scott Spiro on Tuesday, 09 December 2014

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We’re so busy worrying about hackers that we rarely think about how they acquire the tools they need to steal you out of house and home. One reason that the surge of hacking activity has skyrocketed over the past few years is because hacking tools have become more readily available, through an illegal black market known as the Darknet.

We all know how dark the Internet can be. You might have found yourself in some pretty precarious situations in the past, but these don’t compare to the Darknet at all. We could tell you that the Darknet was like a black market, with rogues, roughnecks, and thieves fighting each other in a classic tavern brawl, but the Darknet is far more sophisticated. In fact, it can even be called user-friendly.

It can almost be described as the Amazon of illegal hacking software and credit card information. Its growth is much like any other organization; it started as a small group of hackers trying to make a quick buck, but it has turned into a well-funded, organized institution, capable of spreading its goods both near and far. Even if this kind of activity is illegal, you have to admire the way that the Darknet grew out of nothing. To put things in perspective, here are some statistics which show how easy it is to be a hacker.

Disclaimer: Keep in mind that Computer Solutions Group is not soliciting illegal behavior. Instead, we’re simply showing that anyone can become a hacker, and that proper security measures must be taken to protect your business from this increasingly popular trend.

  • Cybercrime is more lucrative than the illegal drug trade in the United Kingdom. Yes, you read that right. The Cabinet Office reports that cybercrime makes as much as £27 billion per year, while the drug trade lags behind with a meager £10 billion per year. According to Forbes, “This is largely because with cyber crime, the links to end users are more direct and the relative ease of worldwide distribution in comparison to the expanse of shipping physical products, such as drugs.”
  • Mobile spamming kits, which are a legitimate thing, can be rented on a yearly basis in China for anywhere between $2,500 and $36,000. Believe it or not, these spamming kits are quite popular in China, and they are fairly sophisticated. Using them, hackers can take advantage of those who have subscribed to a company’s premium text service. These services typically require a confirmation text to be sent to the company, but these kits allow the hackers to send them automatically, then immediately delete the confirmation text afterward. Simple to use, and super annoying for the victims.
  • Even exploit kits can be rented for anywhere between $500 to $10,000 a month. This highly depends on the quality of the purchased kit. These exploit kits allow users to hack into servers or even personal computers.
  • The freelance hacker typically sells their services for somewhere between $16 to $325 per hour (if the “hacker” doesn’t want to get their own hands dirty). The rate of pay is largely determined by the size of the target.

Criminal Software is Similar to Enterprise Software
Just like enterprise-level software used by small and medium-sized businesses, criminal software is simple to use. Similar to ordinary software services, equipment purchased through the Darknet might even have a warranty or support services available to them. In fact, some vendors might even offer guarantees that their malware will remain undetected, so long as hackers don’t violate the terms of use.

When it comes to your business, it can be difficult and stressful to keep it safe from the hordes of threats on the Internet, especially due to the affordability of hacking software. But, thankfully, hacking software isn’t all that’s affordable. The prevalence of common online threats has led to a decrease in price for security solutions, like Computer Solutions Group’s Unified Threat Management (UTM) solution. This comprehensive security measures features a strong firewall, powerful antivirus, spam blocking, and web content filtering solutions.

With such a powerful piece of equipment augmenting your network, our team can be as productive as possible without worrying about online threats. For more information about how Computer Solutions Group can keep your business safe from both seasoned and amateur hackers, give us a call at 310.641.3274 .

Topics: Hackers, Cybercrime, Security

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