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Men Reuse Passwords More Than Women, Study Says

More than half of French users reuse passwords, PC Tools survey finds

Forty-seven percent of men use the same password for every Website they visit, according to a study published earlier this week.

Only 26 percent of women employ this same dangerous practice, according to a survey of some 4,500 people who visited the Website of security software vendor PC Tools. The company also conducted street interviews in France, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and the U.K. Separate results were compiled for different regions and then compared.

The French are the Web users who reuse their passwords most (56 percent), the survey says. In comparison, 45 percent of Benelux (Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg), 35 percent of U.K., and only 16 percent of German nationals do it.

One in 10 Brits don't use any security software when surfing online, while one-third of the ones who do never update it, the survey says.

Women are more cautious when it comes to opening links or attachments sent by alleged friends -- only half of them do so without checking the real source, the survey says. In contrast, two-thirds of men admitted they normally do so without paying attention to the origin of the message.

Men know more than women about the ways that malware is distributed, the survey says. Forty-four percent of women were unaware that legitimate Websites could be used to spread malware.

"While consumers are generally security-conscious, they are not yet security-savvy," says Michael Greene, vice president of product strategy at PC Tools. "The increased use of the Internet among consumers, almost all of whom are now online on a daily basis, is providing a lucrative market for cybercriminals -- and as a result, we are seeing more and more sophisticated techniques that lure consumers into clicking on malicious links or downloading malicious files."

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Discuss" 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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