In a short two years, it is safe to say that the prospect of cybercrime has suddenly shifted to be a top concern for many decision makers around the world.
It started with the explosive hacks that rocked companies like Sony, JP Morgan, Target, and other well-known brands. More recently, it was the release of thousands of hacked emails from the DNC and John Podesta, along with the allegations of Russian hacking, that has led the news cycle.
As a result, it is not surprising that much of today’s narrative on cybercrime is centered around the devastating potential of external threats to countries or businesses. The reality is, however, that there is a whole other side of things to consider.
Are Insiders or Outsiders the Greatest Cybersecurity Threat?
While external threats like cybercriminals or hackers are an ongoing concern for organizations, it is actually malicious insider attacks that tend to cause the most damage on average (in terms of costs).
Today’s infographic from Digital Guardian explains the differences, methods, and typical costs associated with each kind of cybersecurity threat.
Is it insiders or outsiders that pose the greatest threat to organizations? The answer seems to be both, and for very different reasons.
Insiders or Outsiders?
Outside threats such as cybercriminals, nation state-sponsored attacks, competition-sponsored attacks, and hacktivists are certainly more sophisticated in their approaches, but they also lack the credentials and information that insiders may hold. For that reason, the most likely root cause of data breaches involve both insider and outsider threats together.
Strictly in terms of costs, it’s malicious insider attacks that pose the biggest cybersecurity threat to organizations. When weighted for attack frequency, the average annualized cost of such an attack is $144,542 per year according to the Ponemon Institute.
This puts it above DoS attacks, but by a relatively small margin:
|Type of cyberattack||Avg. cost per attack, weighted by frequency|
|Denial of services||$126,545|
|Phishing & social engineering||$85,959|
|Viruses, worms, trojans||$1,900|
Ranked: The World’s Top 10 Electronics Exporters (2000-2021)
Here are the largest electronics exporters by country, highlighting how electronics trade has increasingly shifted to Asia over 20 years.
Top 10 Electronics Exporters in the World (2000-2021)
From personal computers to memory chips, the electronics trade plays a vital role in the world economy. In 2021, global electronics exports reached $4.1 trillion according to McKinsey Global Institute.
This graphic shows the 10 largest electronics exporters in the world, based on data from McKinsey, and how they’ve changed since 2000.
Ranked: The Top 10 Exporters of Electronics
Which countries are the leading exporters of electronics, and how has this shifted over the last two decades?
|Rank||Country||Share of Total 2021||Share of Total 2000|
|3||🇰🇷 South Korea||7%||5%|
|7||🇺🇸 United States||4%||16%|
We can see in the above table how global electronics trade has become more concentrated in Asia, specifically China and Taiwan. As an electronics powerhouse, 34% of the world’s electronic goods in 2021 came from China, representing $1.4 trillion in value.
Home to leading firms like TSMC, Taiwan also plays a major role due to its prowess in semiconductor manufacturing—highlighting the island’s global importance.
But not all of Asia has been thriving. In 2000, Japan was a global electronics powerhouse responsible for 13% of the industry’s exports, but has seen its share shrink to 4% in 2021. The U.S. has also sheen its electronics lead shrink, with exports down from 16% of the global total in 2000 to just 4% in 2021.
Several factors have driven this shift. Instead of manufacturing electronics domestically, the U.S. has outsourced technology to countries where manufacturing, production, and labor costs are lower. However, recently, the U.S. is focusing on reshoring semiconductor production specifically given its role in national security, as seen through the $52.7 billion CHIPS Act.
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