Malware Wars: Are Hackers on Top?
John Leyden writes on The Register:
The money made from malware is eclipsing the revenue of anti-virus vendors, a leading net security vendor claims. Raimund Genes, CTO of anti-malware at Trend Micro, cites FBI figures that IT security problems cost the economy $62bn last year against IDC estimates that the anti-malware market was worth $26bn in 2005.More here.
The FBI figures include the cost of clean-up operations, not just the profits accrued by the bad guys. Even taking this into account Genes reckons cyber-crooks are raking it in, but we're skeptical. Losses from phishing in the US last year were estimated at $650m, only a tiny fraction of the income of security vendors. Perhaps this figure underestimates malware losses. Placing a figure on malware losses is a notoriously inexact science and the same problems would appear to apply to putting a value on the black economy.
Full Disclosure: Trend Micro is my employer.