In recent years the technological advancements in the IT sector have created capabilities for state-affiliated authorities of an extent beyond belief. Taking into account the vast global network that is the internet, new opportunities arose to carry out cyber espionage for agencies like the US-American NSA or the British GCHQ, targeting individuals, companies, institutions and providers of critical infrastructure. This thesis analyses the present techniques of cyber espionage, and the corresponding emerging risks and threats to the know-how of companies, and to the privacy of individuals, outgoing from intelligence gathering techniques and industrial espionage: topics, that, due to their confidential character, have been subject only to limited research. Further, it investigates the possible preventive measures in the sphere of information security, to protect corporate and personal information, data in particular. In addition, further risks associated with global surveillance and cyber espionage in today-s information society are considered, including the topics of Big Data, mobile devices and Cloud Computing, as well as the presence of cyber war. Furthermore, the European Union's strategy to fight cyber attacks and intelligence gathering, as well as their plans concerning reporting requirements are highlighted. Finally, a look is taken into the scope of security measures, covering inter alia corporate security and alternatives for the individual person. After a theoretical introduction and a situational analysis with the objective to develop anticipation and prevention, the findings of seven interviews with IT experts are presented, evaluated and integrated into the existing state of knowledge. The results reveal that awareness needs to be raised regarding the various risks to information security, not only in the IT related sphere, but also with respect to the highest risk imposing body, the human being.