Class of malware designed specifically to automate cybercrime / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Crimeware is a class of malware designed specifically to automate cybercrime.[1]

Crimeware (as distinct from spyware and adware) is designed to perpetrate identity theft through social engineering or technical stealth in order to access a computer user's financial and retail accounts for the purpose of taking funds from those accounts or completing unauthorized transactions on behalf of the cyberthief. Alternatively, crimeware may steal confidential or sensitive corporate information. Crimeware represents a growing problem in network security as many malicious code threats seek to pilfer valuable, confidential information.

The cybercrime landscape has shifted from individuals developing their own tools to a market where crimeware, tools and services for illegal online activities, can be easily acquired in online marketplaces. These crimeware markets are expected to expand, especially targeting mobile devices.[2]

The term crimeware was coined by David Jevans in February 2005 in an Anti-Phishing Working Group response to the FDIC article "Putting an End to Account-Hijacking Identity Theft,"[3] which was published on December 14, 2004.

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