Happy hackers given easy access

    Date15 Apr 2002
    CategoryHacks/Cracks
    3344
    Posted ByAnthony Pell
    While hacking has traditionally been the domain of internet geeks and pranksters, the "skill" has now entered the mainstream. Hacking is so widespread that there are thousands of people working in UK businesses with enough knowledge to break into the email . . . While hacking has traditionally been the domain of internet geeks and pranksters, the "skill" has now entered the mainstream. Hacking is so widespread that there are thousands of people working in UK businesses with enough knowledge to break into the email systems and secret files both of their own companies and those of their competitors.

    According to figures from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), about 33% of businesses still do not have a firewall between their websites and their internal computer systems, leaving them vulnerable to hackers. And 66% do not have intrusion detection systems, which could detect hackers if they penetrated other defences.

    The result for many British businesses is millions in lost revenue, research and development secrets and corporate strategy. And with UK e-crime laws so weak, the chance of convictions is slim - only seven hackers have been charged over the past two years - making this one of the most dangerous threats to corporate Britain. The reason so few hackers are being convicted is because their offences are currently viewed as mere acts of vandalism - construed as a nuisance that is ultimately harmless.

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