A survey conducted by Barclays has yielded the shock figure that only 17 per cent of people in the UK are able to identify even the most basic cyber attack. These attacks include phishing campaigns carried out via social media messaging.
While it could be assumed that younger generations are more tech savvy, and subsequently safer online, the Barclays research has revealed that millennials are twice as likely to be victims of online fraud.
People over 65 years old were found to have scored 27% higher on the Barclays Digital Safety Index than individuals between the ages of 18 and 24.
Perhaps more surprisingly still, highly educated Londoners with Masters degrees and above, aged 25-34, are the most vulnerable demographic.
In light of these results, Barclays is launching a £10m national digital safety drive that is set to include an advertising campaign geared towards raising awareness to personal digital security. In addition to this, new credit card features and an online quiz will also be targeting the problem.
Ashok Vaswani, Chief Executive of Barclays UK, said: “Fraud is often wrongly described as an invisible crime, but the effects are no less damaging to people’s lives. As a society our confidence in using digital technology to shop, pay our bills and connect with others has grown faster than our knowledge of how to do so safely. This has created a ‘digital safety gap’ which is being exploited by criminals. I believe the need to fight fraud has now become a national resilience issue, and we all need to boost our digital safety levels in order to close the gap.”
A significant advertising campaign could be promising, as no such initiative has so far been implemented that can tackle the widespread cyber attack threats. CBR spoke to David Emm of Kaspersky Labs regarding the lack of awareness raising initiatives, and he regards the need for this kind of measure comparable to the requirement of a safety campaign warning against drink driving.
Laura Flack, Barclays Head of Digital Safety, said: “It’s alarming that younger people and those in cities are more at risk. We need to super-charge our digital know-how and talk to our friends and relatives to prevent these crimes from happening. Often staying safe isn’t rocket science.”