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For all of the concern about Internet attacks from abroad, the annual cybercrime report of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) concludes that more than 60 percent of the world’s cybercrime originates in the United States. Moreover, a recent study by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu (DTT) indicates that Europe, not the United States, is leading the way in terms of implementing security policies and standards. So, what are we to do? THE ICC REPORT The ICC’s report was prepared by its Cybercrime Unit and it analyzes major cybercrime events for the period January 2002 to March 2003. The most interesting aspect of the report is the finding that 63 percent of computer-related crime originated from the United States. At the same time, the Far East represented only 10 percent of computer crime events. Of course, the results could be skewed to the extent that countries other than the United States might not be forthcoming in terms of reporting computer crimes. While the “general hacking” category led to the highest percentage of arrests, in contrast, the “current employees seeking financial gain” category represented only three percent of arrests. Thus, concerns about internal computer crimes may be exaggerated. However, fraud and theft by employees frequently is handled in such a way to avoid public exposure. THE DTT REPORT DTT has prepared a 2003 Global Security Survey of worldwide financial services institutions. This report reveals that more than one-third of banks and financial services companies reported a security breach in the past year. And, of course, that number could be higher, to the extent some breaches are not reported because of fear of adverse publicity. Of the 39 percent of such companies that conceded that their systems had been compromised, 16 percent reported that the breaches resulted from external attacks, 10 percent cited internal breaches, and 13 percent referenced both. While Europe reportedly leads the way in terms of implementing security policies and standards, in addition to technologies like public key infrastructure (PKI) and biometrics, Europe has a low level of business continuity and disaster recovery planning. In the wake of the 9/11 disasters, the United States reportedly has the highest level of disaster recovery planning. WHAT TO DO? When it comes to computer crimes, we must fight such crime at home, and not look only abroad. Plus, for companies, IT security, unfortunately, is becoming a necessary cost of doing business in the new IT world. Indeed, increased IT security staffing probably is important for many companies. Finally, technologies need to be further developed to stay a step ahead of computer criminals. Eric Sinrod is a partner in the San Francisco office of Duane Morris ( www.duanemorris.com), where he focuses on litigation matters of various types, including information technology disputes. Mr. Sinrod’s Web site is www.sinrodlaw.com, and he can be reached at [email protected] . To receive a weekly e-mail link to Mr. Sinrod’s columns, please type Subscribe in the subject line of an e-mail to be sent to [email protected] .

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