Italian defense, security and aerospace giant Leonardo said on Tuesday that the global cost of cybercrime exceeded $6 trillion (approximately Rs 46,352,100 crore) last year due to a surge in online activity due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“The new cybersecurity threats of the past two years are the ‘collateral damage’ of the COVID-19 pandemic and the acceleration of digitalization it has caused,” Alessandro Profumo said at the opening of the Cybertech Europe 2022 conference in Rome.
The volume, sophistication and impact of cyberattacks are all increasing – the global cost of cybercrime will exceed $6 trillion in 2021. “These figures come from the Italian information security association Clusit, compared to an estimated loss of $1 trillion (approximately Rs 772,555 crore) in 2020.
Profumo said one in five attacks targeted Europe, but the continent lacks at least 200,000 cybersecurity professionals.
He told foreign reporters in Rome last month that cybersecurity concerns had grown as Russia invaded Ukraine. “We noticed additional pressure,” said Leonardo’s boss, which has a branch dedicated to cybersecurity.
The Italian defense firm’s statement came a day after the European Union, Britain and the United States accused Russia of being behind a series of cyberattacks linked to the conflict in Ukraine earlier this year, with widespread repercussions across Europe.
Western allies say the latest attack, on Ukrainian communications firm Viasat, has had a wider impact across the continent, disrupting wind farms and internet users in Central Europe. The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) assessed that Russia’s military intelligence service was “almost certainly” involved in the Jan. 13 breach of Ukrainian government websites and the deployment of destructive malware called Whispergate.
British Foreign Secretary Liz Strass said: “This is clear and shocking evidence of a deliberate and malicious Russian attack on Ukraine, with significant consequences for ordinary people and businesses in Ukraine and across Europe.”