Connected homes are expanding, so is attack volume

78% Americans report unsafe online behaviors that open them up to cyber threats, such as reusing or sharing passwords, skipping software updates and more – a 14% increase from just two years ago, according to Comcast.

“This holiday season consumers are purchasing and connecting more devices to their home networks than ever before,” said Noopur Davis, EVP, CISO and Product Privacy Officer, Comcast. “With this influx of devices comes an influx of cybersecurity risk. Now more than ever, consumers need to prioritize keeping their connected devices, and the people who use them, safe from cyber threats.”

The Xfinity Cyber Health Report analyzes cyber threat trends, the growing list of devices in connected homes, and a view into consumers’ attitudes and behaviors around cyber protection. Key findings include:

Connected homes are expanding, so is attack volume

Xfinity xFi homes average 15 connected devices, up 25% from 2020. Power users average 34 devices. And, 58% of consumers plan to buy at least one connected device this holiday season. xFi Advanced Security blocks an average of 23 unique threats per home each month – with the total number of attacks at least three-to-four times that number, since many attacks are repeated.

Consumers still underestimate threats

74% of Americans believe less than 10 attacks hit their home network every month. 61% believe devices are protected from threats right out-of-the-box at purchase. This leaves many new devices open to potential threats without protection.

Consumers unsure they’d know they’ve been hacked

When asked how soon they would know whether they were a victim of a cyberattack, only 20% said immediately. Another 32% said they aren’t sure they’d ever know if they were a victim of a cyberattack. 51% of respondents noted they are not confident that they would know if a non-screen device was hacked, such as a robot vacuum or a smart plug.

Emerging device vulnerabilities misunderstood

Computers and smartphones remain the top two targeted devices consistent with findings in 2020. While consumers recognize the risks associated with these two device types, they underestimate the risk with emerging devices in their homes. In fact, xFi Advanced Security blocked threats to smart watches, lighting, thermostats, doorbells, garage openers, sports and fitness equipment, sprinkler systems and even cars, drones and pet accessories.

Generational cyber divide

70% of Boomers admit to unsafe behaviors compared with Gen X (80%), Millennials (82%) and Gen Z (87%). Gen Z had the lowest awareness of common threats like phishing and malware. 77% of Millennials are likely to buy a connected device this holiday season, the most for any segment surveyed.

Don't miss