Dissertations@Portsmouth - Details for item no. 14387

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Antwi, Abolanle (2024) An investigation into the increase of cybercrime during Covid-19. (unpublished MSc dissertation), University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth


Technological advancement as a whole has paved the way for massive growth in cyber activities. This includes online availability of organisational processes and services, especially online access extending beyond traditional computers to handheld devices, enhancing accessibility.

This welcome development also brought with it an ever-increasing cyber threat, enhancing vulnerabilities to various cyber-attacks. These threats have seen phenomenal growth and exploitation with the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. Global Covid-19 restrictions impacted all critical sectors and public access, necessitating reliance on online services. 

This Investigation on cybercrime increase during Covid-19 pandemic was carried out using a systematic approach, in which secondary data were collected from published research and online annual reports by cybersecurity companies. The collated data was analysed, which affirmed that there was indeed an increase in cybercrimes during the Covid-19 pandemic. Cybercriminals use various forms of cyberattacks such as phishing attacks, personal data breaches, malware attacks, ransomware attacks, denial of services, and others to achieve their aim. 

It is also pertinent to highlight that various sectors including healthcare, education, e-commerce, and other sectors were exploited to steal personal data and damage reputation, leading to financial losses. Losses and Impacts are also correlated in this research. Due to the global lockdown, online services, remote working, and overall technology used with traditional security controls widened the attack surface for cybercriminals. Physical crime rates decreased, while cybercrimes and online fraud rates jumped up significantly during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Based on data analysed in this research, there was a surge in cybercrime rates during the Covid-19 pandemic, as compared to pre and post-Covid-19 pandemic.

Practical guidelines based on research findings are recommended which should be adopted, especially in the event of a future global pandemic. An example of this is the implementation of effective cybersecurity controls, and cybersecurity awareness which are required for protection against cybercrimes.

Course: Cyber security and digital forensics - MSc - P3193PTD

Date Deposited: 2024-04-18

URI/permalink: https://library.port.ac.uk/dissert/dis14387.html