2018 Norton LifeLock Cyber Safety Insights Report

Privacy concerns leave consumers wanting more control, but convenience overrules risk

See how 2018’s heightened attention around breaches and privacy may have influenced consumers’ behaviour and understanding of privacy, security and identity theft in the 2018 Norton™ LifeLock™ Cyber Safety Insights Report, an annual survey of more than 16,000 consumers around the world.

Privacy concerns leave consumers wanting more control, but without hassle or cost

Most consumers (58%) say they are equally or more likely to experience cyber crime than get the flu, so it’s no surprise that 76% of consumers say they are more alarmed than ever about their privacy and 95% believe it’s important to require companies and organisations to give consumers control of how their personal data is used, including 44% who believe it’s absolutely essential that companies do this, or consequently be fined.

See how New Zealand fared

However, convenience proves to reign supreme.

While 87% of consumers want to do more to protect their privacy, 61% agree they accept certain risks to their online privacy to make life more convenient. Even further, many consumers are willing to sell or give away certain person data, with over 1 in 2 being willing to sell or give away their Internet search history (56%) and location (56%), while 41% are willing to sell or give away identification information, such as information on their driver’s license or passport.

Younger generations embrace data sharing, but are also more inclined to take steps to protect their privacy on social media.

While consumers ages 18-38 are significantly more likely to be willing to sell their personal information than those who are 54 and older, they are also more likely to have deactivated a social media account due to privacy concerns1.

For now…

As consumers continue to seek convenience, it’s important to practice simple cyber safety measures2:

  • Use strong passwords: Don’t repeat your passwords on different sites. Make them complex and pick a random word that includes a combination of at least 10 letters, numbers, and symbols.
  • Keep your software updated: Cyber criminals frequently use known exploits, or flaws, in your software to gain access to your system. Patching those exploits and flaws can make it less likely that you’ll become a cybercrime target.
  • Use a full-service internet security suite: Invest in a security suite that offers real-time protection against existing and emerging malware including ransomware and viruses and helps protect your private and financial information when you go online.
  • Manage your social media settings: Keep your personal and private information locked down. Social engineering cybercriminals can often get your personal information with just a few data points, so the less you share publicly, the better.
  • Strengthen your home network: A VPN will help encrypt all traffic sent and received from your devices. If cyber criminals do manage to access your network, they will not be able to intercept the data being sent over your network.
  • Take measures to help protect yourself against identity theft: Key ways to help prevent identity theft include using legitimate sites when shopping online, using a secure network, remaining on the lookout for devices attached to card readers or ATMs and keeping an eye on your credit card statements and credit reports. You should also take advantage of protection tools such as ID theft alerts and EMV chip debit/credit cards as an extra layer of protection.

How We Define Cyber Crime:

  •  The definition of cyber crime continues to evolve as avenues open that allow cyber criminals to target consumers in new ways. Each year, we will evaluate current cyber crime trends and update the report’s methodology as needed, to ensure the Norton LifeLock Cyber Safety Insights Report provides an accurate snapshot of the impact of cyber crime as it stands today. In the 2018 Norton LifeLock Cyber Safety Insights Report, a cyber crime is defined as having personally experienced a crime committed with devices over the Internet. In the Norton LifeLock Cyber Safety Insights Report, this includes one or more of the events listed below.

  • Detected malicious software (e.g., spyware, ransomware, viruses, worms, Trojan horses, adware, etc.) on a computer, Wi-Fi network, smartphone, tablet, smart home, or other connected device
  • Provided personal information, financial information or money in response to a fraudulent email, text message or website
  • Learned your personal information was exposed in a data breach
  • Discovered your personal information was stolen online and used without your permission
  • Threatened with the release of sensitive personal photos, video or information that was stolen online
  • Detected unauthorised access to your home or personal Wi-Fi network
  • Detected unauthorised access on a social media account
  • Detected unauthorised access on an email account
  • Detected unauthorised access on an online retail or shopping account
  • Detected unauthorised access on an online banking or other financial account
  • Detected unauthorised access on another online account 
  • Been stalked, bullied or harassed online

1Generational breakdown is specified as: Gen-Z (ages 18-21); Millennial (ages 22-38); Gen X (ages 39-53); Boomers (ages 54-72); and Seniors (ages 73+).
2No one can prevent all identity theft or cyber crime.