Over one-third of Americans have been hacked

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Two-thirds of Americans believe themselves to be tech savvy, although their actions with regard to online security indicate otherwise – with millennials being the worst offenders, according to Arbor Networks.

americans hacked

With a focus on measuring Americans’ online security aptitude, the research examined the viewpoints of 2,056 American adults on topics such as security concerns and incidents, computer and password protection, online practices and impact to their shopping habits. At least 75% of adults being concerned about their security, privacy, malware or websites tracking them.

While American adults are not taking all of the steps they could to protect themselves by following best practices while online, the prevalence of cyber incidents has led them to hold businesses to high standards of protecting their personal information. In fact, over 70% say they would think twice about shopping at a retail store that had been a victim of a cyber-attack.

Americans have high standards of businesses when it comes to online security:

  • 71% agree if they hear that a retail store was a victim of a cyber security incident involving customers’ information, it makes them think twice about shopping there.

However, the anxiety and expectations have not translated into action:

  • 64% say if they are on a major retail or social networking website, they always consider their information to be safe. Among millennials, its 71%.
  • 55% say if they receive an email from someone they know with a link, they usually click it even if they weren’t expecting anything.
  • 55% agree if they were to be hacked, they wouldn’t know what to do. Among millennials its 66%
  • 36% say they do not think twice about sharing their personal information, such as addresses, locations, birthdays, kids’ and parents’ names and vacation plans on social media channels. Among Millennials, its 50%.

What’s driving the dislocation? For starters, a relentless flow of negative headlines, corporate and government breaches:

  • 80% agree that if the federal government can be hacked, they don’t think they can protect themselves.
  • 39% agree that they don’t worry about being hacked because they are not important enough for anyone to care about their information. That’s 50% for Millennials.
  • 36% said they were victims of hacking. That’s 44% of Millennials.