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  • NETMEDIA International

[Survey] 45% of social network users have been victims of scams

Based on a survey by the FIDO Alliance, 45% of social media users have been scammed or know people who have been scammed. The study also reveals consumer inaction and confusion when it comes to social media security.

The FIDO Alliance (Fast IDentity Online) unveils a study revealing that 40% of users in France (45% worldwide) have had their social media accounts jeopardized or know someone who has. This study also reveals that 61% of the people surveyed in France (58% worldwide) think first about protecting their phone (ahead of other devices - laptop, tablet...) when it comes to the security of their social network accounts.

The study reveals that social network hacks do not necessarily prompt users to take security measures. 41% of French respondents say they don't strengthen the security of their social network accounts when they see celebrities, politicians or large companies hacked, but feel they should.

"You would believe that famous people with lots of followers are the only targets, but our research shows that a much larger number of people have been impacted," says Andrew Shikiar, executive director of the FIDO Alliance. Social network accounts are prime targets, as they contain a large amount of users' personally identifiable information. Yet our study reveals a mismatch between the need to strengthen the security of social media accounts and the willingness of users to act."

A lack of understanding

The study reveals a major gap in awareness and disregard for the two-factor authentication technologies offered by social media service providers. 29% of French respondents (26% worldwide) said they were not aware of or using these technologies. Similarly, 18% of French respondents (15% globally) said they would like to strengthen the security of their accounts but did not know how. Another discovery that highlights the lack of understanding or awareness of these issues is the fact that 4 out of 10 people were not able to determine whether or not they thought they were vulnerable to a hack of their social networks.

For those who have taken steps to better secure their social network accounts, creating a stronger password was the most popular method for 44% of French respondents (50% globally), which still leaves them vulnerable to some of the most common and effective attacks, such as phishing.

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