Cyber-threats thriving in Scotland, government warns its people

Protecting oneself online has become of utmost importance in Scotland with people advised to take action by the Scottish government, which has introduced a plan for businesses and individuals to remain safe online.

Protecting oneself online has become of utmost importance to Scots as they've been advised to take action by the Scottish government, which has introduced a plan for businesses and individuals to remain safe as they surf the web. An unusual rate of cyber-crime has seen 10 percent of Scots encountering unauthorised data hacks.

The strategy reviews the importance of taking simple steps such as maintaining strong passwords, updating software, having firewall settings turned on, installing anti-virus software and using mobile screen locks and passwords. Deputy first minister, John Swinney, of the National Economic Forum in Edinburgh launched the new strategy and stated, “Every day we hear of new online vulnerabilities, attacks and incidents affecting parts of Scottish society.”

A recent survey of 1,000 adults in Scotland found that seven percent of respondents experienced threatening online behaviour. The study also discovered that only one in 12 regularly install software updates, less than 10 percent password-protect their cell phones and only 13 percent check for the security of a website prior to disclosing information of themselves.

“Cyber-crime is also under-reported. As a result, the scale of the problem is difficult to grasp,”concluded Swinney.