Europ Assistance’s Cyber Barometer, conducted by Lexis, which explores consumer sentiment on cyber security across 9 countries, has found that 46% of consumers are worried about cybercrime. This number rises to 49% for respondents with elderly parents and 54% for those with children.
Nearly one third of respondents (31%) feel exposed to cyber security issues and even more so (38%) when it comes to their children’s identity. Concern is the highest in Southern Europe with Spain (47%) and Italy (39%) feeling exposed. Just over a quarter (26%) of respondents indicated that they knew someone who has been the victim of an attack against their personal data while 82% of respondents consider an attack against their personal data to be ‘very stressful’, ranking above incidents such as a car accident.
A lack of digital protection
While concern is high, the survey has also discovered that protection is often neglected. Less than one-third of those questioned said that they frequently change their passwords and digital credentials and even more alarmingly only half of consumers have anti-virus and anti-malware protection on their smartphone or tablet – a worrisome statistic considering this accounts for half of global web traffic.
45% of respondents said they wouldn’t know how to fix their situation if their personal data was compromised and 48% feel that companies and institutions are not doing enough to protect their individual information.
Awareness and willingness to purchase solutions is on the rise
Americans are more aware of identity protection solutions (65%) than Europeans (40%) but consumers are ready to take steps to protect themselves online when aware of the options. More than half of respondents (55%) indicated that they have a positive opinion of cyber and digital protection services and this number rose to 61% for those with children and 57% for those with elderly parents. Consumers are interested in alerting services (57%), 24/7 assistance services (54%), prevention services (47%), and monitoring services (48%).
Antoine Parisi, CEO of Europ Assistance, adds, “Consumers are now more aware of threats to their personal information and while the mounting concerns they have are valid, it is our mission to protect people from any stressful situation. With digital services playing such a key role in our daily lives, we have developed a unique service to protect the identities and personal data of our customers from any type of cybercrime.”