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October 2018, Vol. 20, No. 5

Beware of the gray hat hacker, survey warns

A recent study on the cost of cybercrime to organizations delved into growing concerns about the gray hat hacker -- a security professional who participates in black hat activities. Researchers found that 12% of the security professionals surveyed have considered black hat activities, and 22% have been approached about taking part in them. In some cases, legitimate security professionals have shifted completely to the "dark side" and become black hat hackers. Osterman Research Inc. surveyed 900 security professionals in five countries -- the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia and Singapore -- during May and June of this year. The security professionals surveyed worked for organizations in a range of industries, including financial services/insurance, 10%; manufacturing, 10%; retail, 9%; technology, 9%; and healthcare, 9%. The perceived percentage of gray hat hackers increased with the size of the organization, from 2.8% of IT security professionals at small businesses to 4.2% for midsize companies and 5.7% at ...

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