The European Commission (EC) announced on July 7th 2012, the report on cybercrime carried out by Eurobarometer by means of a survey to Internet users in the European Union (EU).
The survey, conducted between March 10th and 25th 2012, taken by approximately 27,000 people from all EU Member States, reveals that there is a close link between being informed about the risks of cybercrime and feeling safe online. Most users who are not afraid to perform banking operations or to shop online also consider themselves well briefed on cybercrime.
According to the data, Internet users are very concerned about cybersecurity, with 89 percent avoiding the disclosing of personal data and 74 percent agreeing that the risk of being victim of an act of cybercrime increased last year. Of those polled, 12 percent were victims of online fraud and 8 percent of identity theft. Furthermore, 53 percent of Internet users in the EU failed to change their passwords in the past year.
The survey also reveals other interesting data:
- 53 percent of Internet users claim to buy goods or services online, 52 percent use social networks, 48 percent use banking services and 20 percent sell goods or services;
- 29 percent claim to not feel capable of using the Internet to conduct banking operations or to shop online;
- 59 percent do not feel well informed about the risks of cybercrime;
- 40 percent fear that their identity may be usurped or used improperly and 38 percent appear to be apprehensive regarding payments online.
In Portugal, in a universe of a thousand respondents, the data show that only 24 percent of the Portuguese consider themselves well informed about the risks of cybercrime; however, 52 percent avoid giving personal information online.
Regarding the type of use that is made of the Internet in national terms, the activities with the highest percentage of use are related to electronic mail and social networks, with 78 and 65 percent respectively. With lower levels of use are the acquisition and sale of goods or services, with 17 and 9 percent.
With a growing number of people to explore the potential of the Internet and take advantage of the digital economy, the security of personal data and online payments becomes a major concern for users.