Cybercriminals can be anywhere, targeting anyone, which makes them incredibly difficult to hunt down. The sheer quantity of people committing these crimes, as well as the extensive resources needed to prosecute them, paves the way for easy repeat offenses. In 2018, the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) received 351,936 complaints — but only launched a minuscule 18 investigations.
State and national boundaries pose further difficulties for prosecuting cybercriminals. If you file a cybercrime complaint with your local police department against an offender that lives in another state, it’s unlikely that they’ll pursue an investigation. You could be in New York, while someone across the Hudson River — in New Jersey — steals your identity. Under jurisdictional laws, New York police wouldn’t be able to make an immediate arrest.
The same concept applies to countries and sovereign states. If a country doesn’t have an extradition treaty with the U.S., they aren’t obligated to hand over cybercriminals operating within their borders. To make matters worse, some governments openly use malware to spy on journalists and dissidents. Vietnam, for example, has used hacking tactics to suppress government opposition both within the country and abroad.
The overall enforcement rate for cybercrime—or ratio of individuals arrested to crimes reported — is less than 1%. Meanwhile, for violent crimes, the ratio of convicted individuals to crimes reported is 46%. With such little actual enforcement, there’s nothing to deter the continued ballooning of cybercrime around the world.
If COVID-19 and the current economic downturn have left your credit and finances in disarray, the last thing you need is to fall victim to cybercrime. Regal Credit Management can protect you and your credit from cybercriminals. Contact Regal today for more information.