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Global Cost Of Cybercrime: $110 Billion

Cybercrime cost U.S. consumers $20.7 billion in the past 12 months; cost per victim is down, Symantec says

Cybercrime cost consumers about $110 billion in the last 12 months, affecting more than 556 million people, according to a report published Wednesday.

According to the 2012 Norton Cybercrime Report, U.S. consumers absorbed some $20.7 billion of those costs. The study of some 13,000 adults in 24 countries, surveyed users on their experiences with cybercrime and their security practices.

"Every second, 18 adults become a victim of cybercrime, resulting in more than one-and-a-half million cybercrime victims each day on a global level," the study says. "With losses totaling an average of US $197 per victim across the world in direct financial costs, cybercrime costs consumers more than one week's worth of nutritious food necessities for a family of four."

Among U.S. respondents, 72% said they have experienced cybercrime in their lifetime, the study says. The average cost per cybercrime was higher in the U.S. than in most other countries, averaging $290.

More than a third of U.S. users (38 percent) say they don't use complex passwords or change their passwords frequently.

Compared to last year, the survey shows an increase in newer forms of cybercrime, such as those found on social networks or mobile devices, the report says. One in five online adults (21 percent) has been a victim of either social or mobile cybercrime, and 39% of social network users have been victims of social cybercrime, such as scams or hackers breaking into their profiles.

"While 75% of respondents believe that cybercriminals are setting their sights on social networks, less than half [44 percent] actually use a security solution that protects them from social network threats, and only 49% use privacy settings to control what information they share, and with whom," the study says.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Add a Comment" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message. Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

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User Rank: Apprentice
9/17/2012 | 8:29:13 PM
re: Global Cost Of Cybercrime: $110 Billion
This is all about the consumer side, but there is plenty for organizations & enterprises to think about, too. Many of those people who use the same passwords all over the web in their consumer life use the very same ones at work. So each time a phisher or other cybercriminal gets one of those passwords, they only have to figure out where the person works (facebook? twitter? linkedin?), and then they can target those corporate assets as well.-

I would love to see numbers like these for the whole organizational and enterprise side, but the will to disclose that information on the part of the hacked is very low. Too bad...
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