Cybercrime Costs UK Businesses £27 Billion Each Year

By Chanel Smith, EMEA Editor (@PYMNTS_EMEA)

Millions of consumers and businesses in the UK are falling victim to cybercrime, and numbers are only continuing to rise.

A new study released by the University of Kent reported that cybercrime in the UK is reaching alarming heights. The report indicated that over 9 million Internet users are cybercrime victims, and about 8 percent of Brits reported they have lost money due to online attacks. The report also revealed that 2.3 percent of the UK population has lost more than £10,000 due to online fraud, and 2.4 percent lost between £101 and £10,000. Additionally, 18.3 percent of UK consumers claimed they’ve had one or more social accounts hacked, namely online banking accounts, email accounts and social media sites. 

Attacks Based On Demographics

According to the research, fraudsters often have trouble hacking into the accounts of people between the ages of 55 and 64. Researchers indicate these accounts are harder to break into because this demographic is more cautious when using the Internet and online banking. However, the 18-to-24 age group is a different story, as the report showed that one-in-four people are victims of hacking.

Financial Losses

Regarding the Brits who did report to have lost money online, there is small number of Internet users who suffered big losses. Ninety-two percent of people said they didn’t lose a penny, while the other 3.2 percent (over 1,500 consumers) reported they have lost between £1 and £100.

British Economy Suffers

Cybercrime is hitting several regions in the UK, and the UK government reported that the economy loses a total of £27 billion each year. The report indicated that identity theft accounted for £1.7 billion in losses, while scams and fake websites accounted for £1.4 billion in losses. Yet the sector that is suffering the most is the British business sector. The UK government also cited that the business economy suffered losses of over £21 billion at the end of 2011.

To read the full report at the University of Kent website click here.

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