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Report reveals extent of online security ignorance

24 May 2016 - 09:54 by David Aiken

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Staying safe online is important for all internet users, whatever activity they are planning to carry out while connected. From shopping to gaming and social media, security threats are rife and a new McAfee survey has shown the extent to which many people are still failing to face up to the dangers.

Ninety per cent of the people questioned in the study said that they are convinced that they currently use the internet in a safe and secure way. Yet it was also discovered that just over a third of people have either been the victims of a hack in the past or know someone who falls into this camp, according to IT Pro Portal.

This is unsurprising given the lax habits exhibited by respondents to the survey. Twenty seven per cent said that they had not bothered to alter any of the passwords connected with their online accounts in the past year.

Meanwhile, 66 per cent said that they never read the terms and conditions of the apps they install on their smartphones, leaving them open to exploitation.

People were tested on their ability to detect the difference between a genuine site that offers safe shopping online and a malicious phishing site set up to scam them. Just 10 per cent were able to tell the difference.

Furthermore, over a third of parents admitted that they did not have a comprehensive idea of what their children were doing whilst using internet-enabled devices.

Because of the apparent vulnerabilities and lack of knowledge exhibited in the report, McAfee has set up a dedicated cyber security hub which anyone can access to learn more about this issue and, hopefully, do a better job of protecting themselves in the future. And with reputable sites offering shopping online, staying secure is made a little easier.