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What are the effects of computer hacking?

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Computer hacking has cost the U.S. thousands of jobs and has cost some companies their very survival. But not just the U.S. has been affected; the FBI estimates that hacking has affected the world economy to the tune of billions of dollars a year.

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Nortel, previously the world's second-largest telecommunications equipment maker, was hacked and ended up having to lay off most of its 90,000 employees worldwide and file for bankruptcy. Likewise, Massachusetts-based American Superconductor Corp. lost about $700 million and had to let go of more than 500 workers because an employee stole and sold its proprietary software.

"Mafiaboy" notoriously hacked Amazon and eBay, among other e-commerce sites, resulting in about $1.7 billion in damages to these companies.

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