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Reality of cyber crime laid bare as 19 Brits fall victim every minute

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Cyber crime costs the UK economy £474 million a year, with 19 British people falling victim every 60 seconds.

The Norton Cyber Crime Report also reveals that victims calculate the cost of time lost due to cyber crime at £619 million.

The survey of around 20,000 people globally found that Britons are three times more likely to suffer online crime then they are street crime, while more than half of the UK population (51 per cent) has been affected by some kind of cyber crime.

Adam Palmer, lead cyber security adviser at Norton, said the top three threats were viruses (38 per cent), credit card scams (10 per cent) and social networking fraud (six per cent).

He said: “This is an active crime and a serious problem. If you have good security software, it is preventable.”

Oliver Crofton, ethical hacker and founder of Vigilante Bespoke, said he witnesses many instances of social networking fraud in the form of site breaches and suspicious links. “Attacks are becoming very targeted in a move from credit card fraud to bribery over information.

“All this is a problem – 30 per cent of people have a virus on their computer, and that is a high percentage.”

Palmer said: “These are all preventable if you are following good security steps. Look at the figures and imagine if it was a street and 50 per cent [of people on it] were being robbed. This is happening online [but] only 16 per cent of people are reporting it.”

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