Computer fraud on the increase

14 Nov 2002

A study by Ernst & Young’s security and technology team has found that increasing numbers of Irish firms are reporting instances of computer fraud and information theft.

Of the firms surveyed, 83pc of Irish companies identified the speed of change in the industry and the increasing sophistication of threats such as hacking as the main challenges they face.

Andrew Harbison, the manager of Ernst & Young’s security and technology team in Dublin, quotes an FBI computer crime survey that said 82pc of fraud is done by employees and one third of that number is usually members of management.

Harbison adds that mitigating factors in the rise in fraud in Ireland may be our status as the world’s largest exporter of software, a large workforce of technically skilled individuals, our position as the youngest working population in Europe (mostly under-25s) and the large number of redundancies that have occurred over the past two years, possibly creating motives for fraud and/or revenge.

By John Kennedy