Respond to the article malware in hack linked to russian, wsj, january 23, 2014

Malware in Hack Linked to Russian”, WSJ, January 23, Rinat Shabaev developed this and his intentions were to sell it to Russian-based organizations. In my opinion, it was not unethical for Mr. Shabaev to sell the virus that he developed. This is because he was very much aware of the level of damage the code could cause an organization and if he had any ill intentions he could have used the code himself. Shabaev’s aim was to sell the code so that it could serve larger purposes like finding the vulnerabilities in a computer system. He also stated that he wrote a plug-in for a program that saves data to a file and deposits it on a serves. He never wanted to use the code to enrich himself, but rather help to find a solution. The only problem is that the code fell into the wrong hands and was used inappropriately. If the companies had bought the virus, then they would have prevented the harm they suffered. Therefore, what Mr. Shabaev did was not unethical.
Another situation that involved hacking happened when five men, were charged for stealing credit cards summing up to $300 million (Coleman 23). The five collaborated to enter into top companies systems such as J. C. Penney Co, JetBlue Airways Corp, NASDAQ, French retailer Carrefour SA and Visa Inc. licensee (Coleman 23). The five are said to have stolen at least 160 payment card numbers which in turn resulted to the loss of about $300 million. The five went for so long unnoticed by simply disabling their victim’s antiviruses and hiding their loot on multiple hacking programs making them invisible (Coleman 24). This cybercrime is deemed the biggest ever, in the United States, and it affected so many companies. The cost they had to incur to update and repair their security systems and the number of credit cards they had to replace really dug into their finances. Some were even bankrupt. This truly illustrates the consequences that can result from cybercrimes. The loss of customers is another problem they had to face, they feared for the safety of their life long savings and opted to seek more secure and theft proof investment platforms.
The Shabaev virus has really dented the image of TARGET as a trustworthy investment partner. It no longer attracts customers and the ones it had do not feel save in it, therefore, decide to move elsewhere. TARGET also had to spend about $30 million mostly to replace the cards that were affected. The breach also scared away TARGET’S customers leading to decline in its share price by 20%, and also decreasing its profit as compared to the previous year. All these problems significantly damaged TARGET’s reputation both locally and internationally (Packard 9).
Works Cited
Coleman, E G. Coding Freedom: The Ethics and Aesthetics of Hacking. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2013. Print.
Packard, Ashley. Digital Media Law. Malden, MA: John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 2012. Internet resource.