Canadian Underwriter

The Future of Crime

August 17, 2018   by JLT Canada

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Photo copyright: following is an excerpt from JLT Canada’s Shifting the Focus Public Sector Summit post-summit book. Click here to read the full chapter.

The face of crime has changed, as criminal and terrorist organizations have embraced new ways of committing crime. New technology has made traditional crime increasingly risky and unprofitable, forcing criminals to adapt and begin leveraging technological advancements to keep making money. Years ago, credit card fraud was the hot new trend among the unsavoury. Now, cyber-crime has emerged as the safest and most profitable way to steal from unsuspecting victims – from a distance.

Related: Criminals evolve, but crime remains the same: JLT Canada Public Sector Summit

To stay ahead of these criminals, the public sector needs to adapt and continually evolve the ways in which it protects its data. Canadian municipalities should protect themselves using a mix of technological defenses and employee training. While strong network defenses are mandatory, educating employees about how to avoid hacks and online scams is crucial to protecting important documents and data.


The new face of crime is not really a face but a mask. Since the 1990s, the evolution of the internet has allowed criminals to hide behind ones and zeroes, targeting their victims from the safety of their lairs. The increasingly large role of technology in criminal activity gives the impression that it is to blame for the results, but this simply isn’t the case. “There are no new crimes, just new ways of committing them,” says Chris Mathers, an expert in crime and cyber-security. “Even cyber-crime needs a human factor to work.”

All information is for sale, as far as criminals are concerned. Banks, for example, are targeted by potential criminal activity 50 to 60 times per hour. Brute force software, which uses trial and error to attempt to decode encrypted data, can guess 8 billion password variations per minute.

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This story was originally published by Canadian Insurance Top Broker.