The economics of cyber crime

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2020-05

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Digital technologies are creating more value and thus becoming more attractive to cyber criminals. Gary Becker provides a philosophy for understanding crimes from an economic perspective, but criminal behavior and potential policies against it differ in the context of a digital economy. In this dissertation, I analyze the strategic interactions among the relevant entities of multiple scenarios of cyber crime. In the first chapter, I consider crimes with economic incentives where criminals are expected to hack digital systems and ask for a ransom to not disturb those compromised. In the second chapter, I explore cases where a fake data sender tries to insert fake data into a data source to mislead a receiver's data-driven decisions. In the third chapter, I look at how the security of a public blockchain depends on the incentives and interactions among its writers. From these analyses, I derive insights on both how a defender should behave from an individual perspective and how governments should make policies from a social perspective.

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