Following the latest national crime statistics in England and Wales, David Emm, principal security researcher at Kaspersky Lab commented below.

Key findings from the report include:

  • 51% of fraud incidents were cyber related from October 2015 to March 2016
  • 28% of these were “non investment fraud” (online shopping or computer service calls)
  • 2 million computer misuse incidents – 68% cyber virus related
  • 32% were from unauthorised access to personal information (including hacking)

David Emm, Principal Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab:

David Emm“For the first time the ONS national crime statistics include official estimates of fraud and computer misuse – revealing that 51% of fraud now happens online. For someone who battles cybercriminals daily, this is no surprise. As with markets generally, investment tends to flow into areas where it will be most productive, and crime is no different. With so much financial activity moving online, criminals have capitalised on this by moving their activity into the cyber world.

“The lines are sometimes blurred – some scams include both online and real-world activity, such as scam telephone calls to trick the caller into giving criminals remote access to their computer. Therefore, we all need to be aware of the cyber-security threats being carried out around us, with more attempts than ever to steal money, personal information or to extort money by holding our data captive. It is vital that people use a reliable Internet security solution on all connected devices, apply security updates as soon as they become available, download software only from trusted sources (such as official app stores and vendors) and be cautious about e-mail and other messages that include attachments and links – even if they appear to come from friends. Using strong passwords, applying caution when using public Wi-Fi networks, not revealing too much information about ourselves online and regularly backing up personal data should be as intrinsic as locking the doors of your house and keeping valuables out of sight.”