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BizReport : Internet : January 22, 2020

Study: Execs worried about cybersecurity

A growing number of executives are worried about cybersecurity, and they aren't just paranoid. That's the word from a new Google/Harris Poll survey which found that executives are increasingly under attack from phishers and other nefarious types.

by Kristina Knight

According to researchers more than three-quarters of executives believe they are at higher risk of being hacked compared to other people and most (87%) want to know more about how to protect themselves - and their companies.

But don't just think they're paranoid because many are being targeted. About 69% say they've been the target of a phishing attack and 39% have had their accounts compromised because of an attack. What's more, most (72%) say that attack was personalized - using personal details about themselves or their company or other online accounts.

The good news is that many executives have taken steps - like two-factor authentication - to protect themselves, and they are taking precautionary steps faster than the general population. The bad news? As quickly as they protect themselves, phishers and other cyber attackers find new ways to make them targets.

Outside of executives, influencers, activists, and politicians are the most likely to be targeted by cyber threats.

"72% [of high-risk users] say that attack was tailored to them. For example, the attack used
personal details like names of people they know, their organization, or online accounts they subscribe to. Still, the majority say their work-related and personal online accounts are secure from hacking," write the authors of the report. "Politicos (84%) -- along with influencers (86%) and activists (84%) -- are more likely than executives (69%) and journalists (65%) to think they are at a higher risk of being hacked due to  their occupation or online presence compared to the general population. [But] High-risk users are more likely to take action following an attack against their colleague than an  attack against themselves: 39% significantly updated how they secure their online accounts  from hacking after a colleague, peer, or contact had been hacked, while only 30% made  updates after they themselves were hacked."

More data from the Google/Harris Poll report can be accessed here.

Tags: cybersecurity, cybersecurity trends, Google, Harris Poll, internet trends, online security

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