When it comes to the stock market, insider trading is a serious offense. Sure you might get rich quick, but, as Martha Stewart found out, it can also quickly land you in jail.
However, there's a new type of insider trading on the rise that's much harder to detect, and it has the Security and Exchange Commission worried. Not surprisingly, the culprits are hackers.
Specifically, the SEC is worried that hackers are using information leaked in corporate data breaches to know companies' future plans and predict how the market is going to move. One such group I've discussed before is FIN4.
It uses spear-phishing attacks to get information out of key employees at financial institutions and other major companies. Here's how the attack works and how to protect your company.
FIN4 is linked with more than 100 breaches at companies in a range of industries. Usually these companies have volatile stock so the hackers have a better chance of making fast money.
That's why the SEC has recently asked eight or more unnamed major companies to disclose full details of recent data breaches. As it stands, companies only have to provide details if they're "material," whatever that means.
The SEC is hoping that with more details it can bring civil cases against these hackers. That assumes of course that the hackers can be caught.