Consumers vastly misjudge the vulnerability of their home networks

Internet users in the United States vastly underestimate how often their home networks are targeted by cyber threats. That’s one of the key findings of a new Comcast report.

vulnerability home networks

Cyber threats growing numerous and complex

Since January, nearly six billion cybersecurity threats have been blocked – representing an average of about 104 cybersecurity threats per home per month.

“The cyber threats facing even the most lightly connected homes have grown so numerous and so complex, that ordinary people can barely keep track, much less protect themselves,” said Noopur Davis, Chief Product and Information Security Officer, Comcast.

Xfinity xFi users have on average 12 devices per home and added two devices over the past year, while high-end users have as many as 33 devices and added five since last year. And, 61 percent of consumers plan to buy at least one connected device during the upcoming holiday shopping season. With the number of connected devices in the home increasing, cybersecurity protection has never been more important.

Consumers underestimate attack volume

95 percent of survey respondents underestimated the volume of attacks they face each month. The average volume indicated by respondents was 12 attacks per month.

Mix of devices most targeted

The top five most vulnerable devices in connected homes are:

  • Computers and laptops
  • Smart phones
  • Networked cameras
  • Networked storage devices
  • Streaming video devices.

Consumer disconnect on cybersafe behavior

96 percent of consumers surveyed were not familiar with how to answer six basic true/false cyberthreat questions.

Further, 85 percent of respondents indicated they are taking all the necessary security precautions needed to protect their home networks, and yet 64 percent admitted to behaviors like sharing passwords with friends and family that open themselves up to attack.

No screen means more risk

What many people don’t realize is that connected devices can pose a security risk. Cyber criminals target them because many have little or no security protection and devices without screens can be more easily hacked without the consumer even knowing it.

83 percent of consumers would not be 100 percent confident they’d know if one of their non-screen devices – such as a wireless printer or security camera – had been hacked.

Don't miss