Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Risk

4/11/2008
05:07 PM
Connect Directly
LinkedIn
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Study Finds 'Alarming' Ignorance About Cybercrime

"Consumers' unsecured computers play a major role in helping cybercriminals conduct cybercrimes," the National Cyber Security Alliance warns.

At the RSA Conference on Wednesday, the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) reported that U.S. consumers don't understand botnets, networks of compromised computers that have become one of the major methods for attacking computer systems.

"Botnets continue to be an increasing threat to consumers and homeland security," said Ron Teixeira, executive director of the NCSA, in a statement. "Consumers' unsecured computers play a major role in helping cybercriminals conduct cybercrimes not only on the victim's computer, but also against others connected to the Internet."

The NCSA survey involved 2,249 online consumers between the ages of 18 and 65, polled by Harris Interactive.

The NCSA said its study indicates that Americans understand that their computers can be subverted, thereby degrading security for others.

Among the study's findings: 71% are not familiar with the term "botnet"; 59% believe it's unlikely that their computer could affect homeland security; 47% believe it's not possible for their computer to be commandeered by hackers; 51% have not changed their password in the past year; and 48% do not know how to protect themselves from cybercriminals.

Such findings should come as no surprise. Last October, a joint study conducted by McAfee and the NCSA found that almost half the consumers surveyed erroneously believed their computers were protected by antivirus software.

Moreover, the ongoing success of social engineering attacks demonstrates that people are easily fooled. And really, given the frequency with which studies exposing people's ignorance about all manner of things appear, it should be assumed that more education about everything is needed.

Teixeira considers it "alarming" that people don't know how to keep their computers secure.

That may well be cause for alarm, but it's worth noting that companies with highly paid IT professionals get hacked, too. That's at least as alarming, if not more so.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
News
A Startup With NSA Roots Wants Silently Disarming Cyberattacks on the Wire to Become the Norm
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  5/11/2021
Edge-DRsplash-10-edge-articles
Cybersecurity: What Is Truly Essential?
Joshua Goldfarb, Director of Product Management at F5,  5/12/2021
Commentary
3 Cybersecurity Myths to Bust
Etay Maor, Sr. Director Security Strategy at Cato Networks,  5/11/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-18178
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-18
Path Traversal in HongCMS v4.0.0 allows remote attackers to view, edit, and delete arbitrary files via a crafted POST request to the component "/hcms/admin/index.php/language/ajax."
CVE-2020-20214
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-18
Mikrotik RouterOs 6.44.6 (long-term tree) suffers from an assertion failure vulnerability in the btest process. An authenticated remote attacker can cause a Denial of Service due to an assertion failure via a crafted packet.
CVE-2020-20222
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-18
Mikrotik RouterOs 6.44.6 (long-term tree) suffers from a memory corruption vulnerability in the /nova/bin/sniffer process. An authenticated remote attacker can cause a Denial of Service (NULL pointer dereference).
CVE-2020-20236
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-18
Mikrotik RouterOs 6.46.3 (stable tree) suffers from a memory corruption vulnerability in the /nova/bin/sniffer process. An authenticated remote attacker can cause a Denial of Service due to improper memory access.
CVE-2020-20237
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-18
Mikrotik RouterOs 6.46.3 (stable tree) suffers from a memory corruption vulnerability in the /nova/bin/sniffer process. An authenticated remote attacker can cause a Denial of Service due to improper memory access.