BrandArena: Three-quarters of Internet Users Can’t Recognise an Online Threat, Kaspersky Lab’s Quiz Shows

Thursday 19 November 2015

Three-quarters of Internet Users Can’t Recognise an Online Threat, Kaspersky Lab’s Quiz Shows

Kaspersky Lab has found that three-quarters (74%) of Internet users would download a potentially malicious file, because they lack the ‘cyber-savviness’ they need to spot dangers online. The results of a global quiz which questioned 18,000 Internet users about their online habits, has raised concerns about the ability of users to recognise online threats.

The cyber-awareness of Internet users was tested during the quiz when they were asked to download the song ‘Yesterday’ by the Beatles. Out of the four download options, only one was a safe wma. file, intentionally named ‘Betles.Yesterday.wma.’ This was chosen by just a quarter (26%) of respondents, who spotted that it was a harmless file type, despite the spelling error in the file’s name.

The most dangerous file option, exe. contained the well-known ‘mp3’ term as part of its name, ‘Beatles_Yesterday.mp3.exe,’ tricking a third (34%) of respondents into selecting it. 14% chose a scr. screensaver download, a file type which has recently been used to spread malicious material, and 26% selected the zip. option, which could have contained some dangerous files.

The inability of users to spot danger online is not limited to music. According to the survey, one in five (21%) users download files from a variety of online sources, increasing their risk of encountering a malicious supplier. During the survey, only 24% of users could recognise a genuine webpage, without selecting a phishing option. In addition, while specifying the web pages on which they were prepared to enter their data, over half (58%) of users only named fake sites.

The findings follow recent consumer research from Kaspersky Lab and B2B International, which disclosed that 45% of Internet users globally have encountered a malware incident in the last 12 months, yet 13% of those who had been affected didn’t know how.

David Emm, Principal Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab says, “Consumers need to make themselves more aware of the dangers of the online world, in order to protect themselves and others. If a consumer is in a dodgy bar, they are unlikely to start counting large sums of cash, it just would not be streetwise or sensible. The same sort of instinct should come into play when consumers go online. Checking for signs of malicious activity, and knowing how to spot a phishing page or dangerous download option is vital. However, no matter how cyber-savvy a person is, it is unsafe to go online without putting security solutions in place. Cyber-criminals are constantly developing new ways to target people and only the most up to date security software can protect users against some threats.”

Kaspersky Internet Security – Multi-Device and Kaspersky Total Security – Multi-Device, along with free security solutions from Kaspersky Lab, help users to recognise threats they cannot. Kaspersky Lab’s free solutions provide high quality protection, sufficient to counter the most common threats. Kaspersky Lab’s paid-for solutions combine the powerful antivirus engine with premium functionality and advanced performance.

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