HomeNewsBriefNorton says Cyber Crime Costs Mexico $3B Per Year
BRIEF

Norton says Cyber Crime Costs Mexico $3B Per Year

CYBERCRIME / 10 OCT 2013 BY NATALIE SOUTHWICK EN

A report by the internet security firm Norton estimates cyber crime costs to Mexico are nearly double what they were in 2011, highlighting the country’s status as a regional hub for online crime while the government struggles to keep up with evolving technology.

In its annual survey, Norton says Mexicans surveyed reported cyber crime costs had reached $3 billion, up from $1.8 billion when the same survey was done in 2011.

In contrast, Brazil's costs went from $15 billion to $8 billion in the same time period. 

At least one Mexican official confirmed the trend. Rafael Estrada Michel, director of the National Institute of Penal Sciences, told an international cyber crime conference taking place in Mexico City this week that cyber crimes were now generating more criminal complaints than those associated with piracy or drug trafficking, reported Excelsior.

InSight Crime Analysis

Cyber crime cost a total of $113 billion across the world and affected 378 million people between July 2012 and July 2013, Norton said. Hacking, scams, fraud and theft are the most widespread crimes, the company reported.

Cyber crime offers high profits with low risk, and Latin American organizations have been quick to jump on board. Cyber crime was reported to cost banks in the region $93 billion in annually in 2011 and over half of Latin American companies reported cyber attacks in 2012.

SEE ALSO: Coverage of Cyber Crime

In Mexico, the combination of rampant organized crime and high levels of internet connectivity led the country to quickly become a global hub for cyber crime. The country is reported to rank 8th in the world for cases of identity theft and to be the world’s largest distributor of child pornography. The fact that $3 billion of $110 billion in cyber crime costs globally originated from Mexico in 2012 illustrates the extent of the problem.

While Mexican organized crime is not thought to be directly involved in child pornography, the internet has become a very important tool for gangs, which use social media and Youtube to target kidnap victims, intimidate people, keep tabs on members and promote themselves.

Mexican security officials have pledged to fight cyber crime within their borders. However, cases like a recent security breach credited to hacker group Anonymous have highlighted institutional weaknesses in combating the rapid growth of the activity. A study commissioned by the Organization of American States released earlier this year warned Latin American governments were failing to keep up with criminals' use of technology.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

INFOGRAPHICS / 29 NOV 2011

Is Mexico’s drug war spilling into the United States? Two recent cases bring new prominence -- and new confusion --…

MEXICO / 21 MAY 2014

Fuel theft along Mexico state oil firm Pemex's oil and gas pipelines is increasing rapidly, raising questions over the extent…

HUMAN RIGHTS / 23 FEB 2015

Authorities in Mexico say complaints of human rights abuses perpetrated by the army decreased dramatically over two years, but a…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Gender and Investigative Techniques Focus of Workshops

26 NOV 2021

On November 23-24, InSight Crime conducted a workshop called “How to Cover Organized Crime: Investigation Techniques and A Focus on Gender.” The session convened reporters and investigators from a dozen…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Names Two New Board Members

19 NOV 2021

In recent weeks, InSight Crime added two new members to its board. Joy Olson is the former executive director of the Washington Office on Latin America…

THE ORGANIZATION

Senate Commission in Paraguay Cites InSight Crime

12 NOV 2021

InSight Crime’s reporting and investigations often reach the desks of diplomats, security officials and politicians. The latest example occurred in late October during a commission of Paraguay's Senate that tackled…

THE ORGANIZATION

Backing Investigative Journalism Around the Globe

5 NOV 2021

InSight Crime was a proud supporter of this year's Global Investigative Journalism Conference, which took place November 1 through November 5 and convened nearly 2,000 journalists…

THE ORGANIZATION

Tracking Dirty Money and Tren de Aragua

29 OCT 2021

InSight Crime was delighted to support investigative reporting in the Americas through a workshop with our friends at Connectas, a non-profit journalism initiative that facilitates collaboration…