Half of Poles do not know what the threat called phishing is. And do you know?

Half of Poles do not know what the threat called phishing is.  And do you know?

According to a study on digital security, nearly half of Poles do not know what the online threat called phishing is.

What is phishing, what methods are most often used by cybercriminals and which age group is most vulnerable to online fraud? These and other questions are answered by the authors of the report called “Digital Security of Poles 2024”, SMSAPI.

What is phishing? Half of Poles have no idea

According to the study, as many as 46 percent Poles do not know what phishing is. Its authors remind us that this is a form of cyber attack in which criminals impersonate reliable institutions or companies in order to extort data or distribute malicious software.

These types of activities very often end with the theft of funds from bank accounts, so nowadays everyone who uses electronic banking on the Internet should be aware of the existence of phishing.

Suffice it to mention that in 2022, the CERT Polska team, which detects events violating Internet security, recorded over 25,000. incidents using methods classified as phishing.

Every fifth Pole does not know whether he has been cheated online

The aforementioned research report also states that almost every fifth respondent is not even sure whether they have ever been a victim of online fraud.

“This indicates low public awareness in this area and the need for education. However, we must remember that sometimes it is difficult to determine whether we are a victim. If our data is stolen, it may be completely untraceable. Of course, only until this information is used, for example, to make a transaction or take over the account” – points out an expert from WithSecure, Leszek Tasiemski, who is quoted in the report.

Favorite methods of cybercriminals

To conduct phishing attacks, cybercriminals most often use e-mail and SMS messages, which are within the reach of virtually all citizens. However, instant messengers are becoming more and more popular (used by 13 percent of respondents), even overtaking telephone calls (9 percent).

However, the method of operation of online fraudsters, regardless of the method of establishing contact, often remains the same – fraudsters use various forms of manipulation and pressure to increase the pressure to force the victim to take quick action, before he has time to thoroughly check the message and verify its sender.

Who is most vulnerable to a cyber attack

The study clearly shows that people over 55 years of age (54%) are most vulnerable to cyberattacks. The authors of the report rightly note that this group is becoming more and more active online every year, but may still have low awareness of digital threats. According to Central Statistical Office data, in 2023 only 8 percent people over 55 years of age checked whether the website where they provide their data is reliable and safe.

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