Autism, Cybercrime, and Security’s Skill Struggle

Interesting article by Kelly Sheridan published 3/13/19 on DarkReading (a cyber security news site).

People on the autism spectrum often possess traits that could help them succeed in cybersecurity – providing they don’t fall into cybercrime first.

Many cybercriminals aren’t diagnosed with autism until they enter the criminal justice system – and the same traits that lead them toward digital crime could potentially help them fight it.

Rebecca Ledingham, vice president of cybersecurity at Mastercard, spotted the trend earlier in her career as a cyber agent for the UK’s National Crime Agency. “They weren’t the kinds of offenders I was used to dealing with in drugs and sex crimes,” she said in an interview with Dark Reading. Their social behavior, she said, was different from what she’d seen in other areas of crime.

Often, she continued, cybercriminals are first diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum during the criminal justice process. Later in her career, as a cyber agent for INTERPOL’s Global Complex for Innovation (IGCI), she realized the issue was broader. Ledingham’s work with global agencies revealed outside of cybercrime, no other offense came with a foundational condition. “There’s no other organic set of offenders that may be predisposed to cybercrime due to the nuances of their disorder,” she said.

The full article can be found by clicking this link.

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