Cybercriminals are far from new to the world of crime. Since the invention of the internet and its adoption in homes across the country, these criminals have worked diligently to steal personal information and spread malicious software.

As with everything, though, crimes in the USA look a lot different than it did in the 1980s or 90s. As online possibilities grow and new technology emerges, so do the nefarious activities people can do with them. Here are today’s cybercriminals.

The Activist

An activist is someone with a cause in mind, and that cause can be anything. Some have political motivations, while others take up religious or social causes. Your average activist who attends in-person events probably isn’t a cybercriminal, but the odds are high that there are at least a few online criminals within any movement. There’s always a bad egg somewhere, right?

The activist cybercriminal relies on data theft, damaging reputations, or defacing the websites of those they view as opponents. These are often impulsive and crude actions, but happen to be extremely effective in achieving the criminal’s goals.

The Minor

Cybercriminals under the age of 18 come in various forms. Some simply pirate music or access content meant for adults, while others take their criminal activities more seriously. The latter often possess the most basic of hacking skills, posing little threat in the scheme of cybercrime and knowing they’re too young to go to jail for their actions.

This cybercriminal is someone learning the trade. They might simply be trying to impress their friends with their computer skills or looking to get into the world of online crimes as they work to draw the attention of senior cybercriminals. In some cases, they might not even understand that what they’re doing is illegal.

The Insider

An insider is just that, someone on the inside. Their position allows them access to systems with personal or critical data. Often the disgruntled employee knows how to bypass security measures and take the data they want. Financial institutes and major corporations have run into plenty of these, leaving them with larger-than-life hacks and stolen information.

State Actors

Enter the true professional, someone whose life skills revolve around hacking and whose job pays them to do it. These individuals are often hired as cybersecurity and have close ties to powerful individuals ranging from CEOs to the government itself.

Should they turn criminal, their state-of-the-art abilities and knowledge of covering their tracks make them tough to catch. Even worse, other cybercriminals are quick to take credit for top-tier crimes. They are rivaled by only one other type of cybercriminal.

The Pro

This individual has all the skills and abilities of state actors, if not more. They have created a career out of online crimes, often selling tools of the trade or running organized crime rings within the depths of the internet.

The pro has tightly interwoven networks of consultants, contacts, and specialists at their disposal. Their schemes can rise to prominence and disappear in the blink of an eye, fading back into the shadows with millions in illegal earnings as they plot their next crime. The mafia wished they had members as good as this one.

Your DefenseIf you’ve become the victim of one of these cybercriminals, then you have legal recourse. It’s going to take a highly skilled professional, like this Boulder computer crimes lawyer, to help you reclaim what you’ve lost and seek compensation. While they might be crafty, cybercriminals are far from uncatchable.