People don’t necessarily exercise the required caution when they’re online. Yet as everyone become increasingly reliant upon working and living digitally, this complacency could be leaving many vulnerable to fraudsters.
>See also: 2017 was the year that defined cybercrime
The latest ONS Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) revealed that over half of fraud incidents in 2017 were cyber-related (56%), highlighting just how important it is to stay on your guard online. The volume of fraud and computer misuse estimated by the CSEW makes this the most prevalent crime covered by the survey, with around one in 10 adults falling victim in a 12-month period.
This demonstrates that more needs to be done to improve the UK’s resilience to fraud and scams, the effects of which can be devastating to victims’ lives. Keeping yourself safe online needs to become second nature, just like locking your front door.
However, recent research from Barclays shows that a quarter (24%) of scam victims put their experience down to naivety, whilst 17% simply didn’t know the warning signs to look out for.
If people want to be beat the fraudsters, businesses and government have an important part to play, but it is also down to all of us as individuals to learn how to protect ourselves and operate safely online.
From doing the weekly shop, to buying that last-minute present, we could be targeted when we least expect it, and we all need to train ourselves to spot the warning signs.
For example, our recent research found almost four in ten (38%) online shoppers either don’t know, or aren’t sure, how to identify a secure website when shopping online.
Quick tips for staying digitally safe
Beware of free Wi-Fi – Don’t send or receive private information when your device is connected to public Wi-Fi, unless you’re using a secure web page.
‘Safe account’ scam – No genuine bank would ask you to transfer money to a ‘safe account’. Ignore anyone who asks you to do this, whether it’s by phone, email or any other method.
Ignore unsolicited emails – Don’t click on any links or open any attachments from an unsolicited email. Doing so could allow fraudsters to access to your information or infect your device with a virus.
Sourced by Ashok Vaswani, CEO Barclays UK