Skip to main content
No application fee for online programs. Get started today!

Learn to Prevent Computer and Internet Fraud With an Economic Crime Forensics Degree

Home laptops, business networks, data storage devices, mobile devices, games and smart home appliances are just some examples of targets for computer fraud and cyberattacks, and the threat is growing.

Varonis, a cybersecurity provider, cited statistics compiled from various sources that illustrate the growing threat of cyberattacks and lack of widespread preparation:

  • Over half of all organizations reported a cyberattack in the last 12 months.
  • Reports of password and authentication theft and lost or stolen devices increased by 75%.
  • More than half of all financial institutions were hit by ransomware within the last year — a 62% increase on the previous year.
  • Remote workers have caused a security breach in 20% of organizations during the pandemic.

An IBM article warns that “for 83% of companies, it’s not if a data breach will happen, but when. Usually more than once.”

Professionals can learn more about such vulnerabilities and how to prevent and respond to them in the online Master of Science (M.S.) in Economic Crime Forensics with a Specialization in IT and Cybersecurity Policy program from La Salle University. In an world that is ever-reliant on technology and data storage, the demand for these professionals will only increase.

How Are Electronic Storage Devices Vulnerable to Fraud and Cybercrime?

Data is stored on a number of devices including computer hard- and solid-state drives; magnetic tape for long-term archival, network-attached devices connected to small business and home systems; and enterprise storage areas that provide high-speed access. Organizations and individuals, however, are flocking using the cloud to store everything from budget spreadsheets to digital information that supports operations worldwide.

By 2025, the total global data storage will exceed 200 zettabytes of data — half of which will be in the cloud. Yet, only 25% of all computing data was stored this way in 2015. That’s where hackers are looking for opportunities.

The cloud became the cyberwar frontline in 2020 when state-sponsored hackers in Russia attacked SolarWinds, an American business-software company. The hackers added code to an eventual update to SolarWinds’ widely used Orion program. The code stayed silent until the update was distributed and activated itself several weeks after it was installed, undetected, by an estimated 18,000 government and corporate organizations — including cloud software vendors — worldwide.

“For months the hackers […] could take their pick, spying on and stealing information, whizzing around thousands of different organisations,” one BBC article reported. According to an Atlantic Council article, the malware spread through the cloud “vacuuming up emails and files.”

Affected companies in the U.S. spent an average of $12 million to recover from the SolarWinds attack and lost an average of 14% of their annual revenue. Unfortunately, the threat of similar attacks is growing.

Organized cybercriminals are flattening the playing field by providing non-technical hackers with turnkey attack platforms. This democratization of cybercrime is experiencing “explosive growth” as cybergangs “weaponize new technologies at scale” and sell them on the dark web “to enable more disruption and destruction.”

How Do Organizations Protect Themselves From Computer and Internet Fraud?

Developing effective fraud-prevention strategies begins with IT and cybersecurity policy professionals with advanced insights and understanding. Demand for these professionals will grow by 35% through 2031 — about seven times the rate for all careers.

Candidates for roles such as fraud examiners, fraud and forensics investigators and compliance auditors can gain a competitive advantage by earning an M.S. in Economic Crime Forensics with a Specialization in IT and Cybersecurity Policy from La Salle University. The program prepares graduates for high-demand, lucrative careers through a curriculum that includes the following courses:

  • The Computer and Internet Fraud nurtures understanding of how computer fraud and manipulation are accomplished and what security measures to institute for prevention.
  • Information Security explores policy development to ensure the effective use of authentication, authorization, administration and business resumption planning.
  • Crisis Management and Business Continuity develops insights into assessing threats of terrorist, criminal, industrial, natural, technological, environmental, economic and political fraud and cybercrime.

Demand for IT and Cybersecurity professionals is growing in all sectors, U.S. News & World Report notes, because “it’s no longer a matter of ‘I hacked your website.’ It’s more like ‘I’m holding you for ransom or I’ll shut down an entire coastal pipeline.'” The high stakes of this threat in an increasingly data-driven world means IT and cybersecurity professionals will be of more value than ever.

Learn more about La Salle University’s online M.S. in Economic Crime Forensics with a Specialization in IT and Cybersecurity Policy program.

Our Commitment to Content Publishing Accuracy

Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only. The nature of the information in all of the articles is intended to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered.

The information contained within this site has been sourced and presented with reasonable care. If there are errors, please contact us by completing the form below.

Timeliness: Note that most articles published on this website remain on the website indefinitely. Only those articles that have been published within the most recent months may be considered timely. We do not remove articles regardless of the date of publication, as many, but not all, of our earlier articles may still have important relevance to some of our visitors. Use appropriate caution in acting on the information of any article.

Report inaccurate article content:

Request More Information

Submit this form, and an Enrollment Specialist will contact you to answer your questions.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Or call 844-466-5587

Begin Application Process

Start your application today!
Or call 844-466-5587 844-466-5587
for help with any questions you may have.