A worrying new study by the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) has foundthat Americans are disturbingly ignorant when it comes to cyber security. Almost half (48%) don’t know how to protect themselves from cyber crime, while 46% don’t know what to do if theybecome cyber crime victims. Perhaps the most staggering figure is that, although the term has been bandied round a great deal in recent months, 71% have never heard of a botnet, and 59% feelit’s not like that the security of their computer could affect national security. Ron Teixiera, executive director of the NCSA, said, “It is important for consumers tounderstand that safe cyber security practices not only protect them from identity theft, but also prevent cyber crime and attacks. By taking simple steps, consumers can protect themselves from cybercrimes and join our effort to protect other internet users." He found the ignorance about botnets especially disturbing. “Botnets continue to be an increasing threat to consumersand homeland security. Consumers’ unsecured computers play a major role in helping cyber criminals conduct cyber crimes not only on the victim’s computer, but also against others connected to theinternet." On the plus side, 49% of respondents had changed their passwords in the last year, 19% of them in the last month.
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