With every keystroke and search on the internet, the amount of information – and potential threats – we can have at our fingertips is endless. But even in 2022, what do we really know about cybersecurity?
A recent survey of 2,000 American adults found that while 70% of people feel knowledgeable about cybersecurity, the average person still comes across a suspicious online site or social media account 6.5 times a day.
The results revealed that only 39% were aware that suspicious sites can spread malware and viruses to their computers, and more than half (54%) were unaware of the difference between active and passive cybersecurity threats – cybersecurity threats passive attacking your devices without you even making a decision. stock.
Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of AT&T, the survey also found that 69% of consumers are confident they can identify suspicious websites at a glance – and share that they know those sites have potential risks of identity theft (45%).
But even with that in mind, consumers admit to intentionally visiting unverified sites – identifiable as websites with lots of pop-ups, no “s” in the http to define “secure”, etc. – to broadcast major sporting events, such as the United States. Open and MLB games (38%), or to download a hard-to-find song or video game (37%) and even to buy necessities at a deep discount (36%).
And when it comes to their password security, most people are reactive rather than proactive (34%), only taking action when alerted to a login from another device. Forty-two percent of respondents also admit to using the same password for multiple logins, and 31% even use their birthday as a password.
“Whether browsing websites or apps, our results show that less than 40% of people consider common security risks, with less than a third keeping network intrusions in mind. (32%) and malicious mobile apps or software (31%),” Josh said. Goodell, vice president of broadband technology management at AT&T. “One way people can help mitigate their cybersecurity risks at home is to use a VPN, or Virtual Private Network, to encrypt their data and prevent potential hackers from tracking their online activity.”
To add to the ever-changing risks brought about by cyberspace, respondents reported having an average of about eight connected devices in the home, such as smart TVs, thermostats and doorbells. And almost half (47%) of users of these devices consider them a security risk.
Another common risk consumers face? Receive emails from unknown senders. Almost half (48%) said they had received an email from someone they didn’t know telling them to click on something, and 47% had received an email or text message to win a draw draw or a raffle in which they did not participate.
Forty-five percent have even received a phone call from someone claiming to be from a government agency – a particularly troubling statistic, given that 36% are more willing to respond to a message from someone they don’t know if it appears to come from an official organization.
Security risks will always be part of the Internet experience. But maintaining a proactive approach while taking advantage of the security technology we have will only help to mitigate these risks.
“Combining your own proactive security habits with an Internet service provider that offers security features such as identity monitoring, malicious site blocking, and virus scanning can help protect you against potential threats and to give you peace of mind for your overall connected experience,” added Goodell. .