According to a survey by cybersecurity company Surfshark, more than 70% of UK residents expressed concern for their online safety, with 92% stating that online privacy is important to them. However, a third admitted to data breaches, with the same amount saying they’d sacrifice security for higher quality online services.
The User Attitudes Privacy Survey 2022 approached 1925 respondents in Australia, Canada, Germany, the UK, and the US to look into peoples’ perspectives on their digital privacy, at a time when experts are urging people to stay vigilant and protect personal data, with an 800% global rise in cyberattacks reported in recent weeks.
“Since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, global cyberwarfare has increased,” explained Aleksandr Valentij, chief information security officer at Surfshark. “It’s challenging to contain cyberattacks in exact regions, and there’s always a significant chance of collateral damage to almost any country on this planet.“
Brits use privacy tools less often than the rest of respondents, according to the survey, with only Germans being more laid back about their approach to app privacy settings. Two-thirds actively manage their app permissions and are selective about which cookies they allow on websites. Additionally, one in three Brits still choose to put the quality of apps, websites and platforms before their privacy.
“Now it’s important to treat any suspicious activity much more seriously, especially phishing attempts,” said Valentij. “Although the risks are elevated, there are basic ways to protect yourself online. Don’t download files from unknown or unsecured HTTP pages, keep all your software up to date, make backups in case of “wiper” types of attacks and use antivirus, VPN and firewall solutions whenever possible.”
Back in January, The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) issued new guidance, saying it is vital companies stay ahead of potential threats. During the first days of Ukraine’s invasion, a suspected Russian cyberattack caused a partial outage in its residential broadband services in Ukraine and other European countries.
.The United Kingdom has also been found to have the highest cybercrime rate in the world as of 2020, surpassing the US. Surfshark Alert reports that 25% of UK citizens have been affected by a data breach in 2021, with 33% in the US.
User Attitudes Privacy Survey 2022 had a sample size of 1925 respondents, divided into statistically representative pools of people from Australia, Canada, Germany, the UK, and the US. The full result of data analysis is available on Surfshark’s blog post here: https://surfshark.com/attitude-on-privacy
Read our special report on cybersecurity in AV here.