British Cyber Security Survey 2021 Findings

Predatech has today released the findings of the British Cyber Security Survey 2021 which measures awareness, attitudes and behaviours towards cyber security.

A short document has been prepared to highlight key findings and to share the data gathered. This document can be found here.

The survey highlights that 78% of UK consumers expect cyber threats to increase over the coming year, rising to 88% among those aged 65+.

Our most interesting findings focus on how different age groups think about cyber security. 70% of consumers aged 65+ reported feeling well prepared against harmful cyber activity, compared to 65% across all age groups, but this group also believe that they are most likely to become the victim of a cyber scam in 2021.

Those aged 18-24 are less convinced that the threat is increasing. 71% believe that cyber threats will increase in 2021, compared to an average of 78% across all consumers. Only 57% of those aged 18-24 and 58% of those aged 25-34 believe that they’re well prepared to protect themselves against cyber attacks, marking these groups as the least confident about their own preparedness.

The survey also asked consumers how likely they would be to stop using retail, financial and social media businesses should they suffer a data breach. 8% said that they were very likely to stop using a retail business that suffered a data breach, rising to 12% when asked about social media platforms and 21% when asked about financial firms.

Those aged 18-24 are far more likely to stop using a financial business if it suffered a data breach. 68% stated that they would be very likely or somewhat likely to stop using a financial business that had suffered a breach, against an average of 55% across all consumers. While younger customers may not be very forgiving of their financial providers, they are prepared to cut social media platforms a lot more slack. 43% said that they’d be somewhat unlikely or very unlikely to stop using a social media platform that had suffered a breach, against an average of 24% across all consumers.

How likely are consumers to stop using a business they dealt with that experienced a data breach?

Impact of a data breach

Jason Johnson, cyber security expert at Predatech said, “Overall people understand that the cyber threat is growing, but too many are missing the quick and easy steps that will help to safeguard them against these dangers. Consumers should be more aware of where they place their data online as information from data breaches is often exposed publicly and can arm attackers with what they need to access other accounts and cause further damage.”

Consumers also shared what actions they take to improve their security. The top three most common actions cited are: Use a mixture of uppercase, lowercase, numbers and special characters in passwords (75%), enable password/passcode on all your devices (56%) and install antivirus (55%).

The responses also highlighted more generational differences. While 65% of consumers aged 55-64 and 68% of those 65+ have installed antivirus, it proved to be significantly less popular among those aged 18-24 and 25-34, with just 45% having antivirus installed. Conversely, two-factor authentication (2FA) proved to be popular with younger consumers, with some 42% of those aged 18-24 and 40% of those aged 25-34 using 2FA. Just 35% of consumers aged 55-64 and 27% of those aged 65+ use 2FA.

82% of Scottish residents told us that they expect the cyber threat to increase, the highest reported across any region. But just 12% believe that they will fall victim to a cyber scam in 2021, which is the lowest percentage reported.


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