Around 65 per cent of people have been a victim of cybercrime, security vendor Symantec has said in a new report.
The firm's latest Norton Cybercrime Report said that as a consequence just nine per cent of people feel "very safe" online while only three per cent of internet users think cybercrime wont happen to them.
Symantec said that 51 per cent of users had experienced viruses or malware, ten per cent had fallen foul of online scams while nine per cent had experienced so-called phishing attacks. Seven per cent had also experienced social network profile hacking and a similar number had been struck by credit card fraud.
"We should all be able to enjoy the Internet without fear of victimisation," said Symantec cyber security advisor Adam Palmer. "Empowerment will occur by raising awareness of the issues related to cybercrime and educating people."
The UK faired better than the global average of a 25 day resolution of cybercrime with a total cost $153, compared to the average of 28 days and $334. However nearly a third of victims globally (31 per cent) had never resolved a cybercrime, said the report.
Symantec said 83 per cent of people don't use a seperate email address for online purchases which the firm claimed was "an easy ride" for cybercriminals. The report also claimed 74 per cent of people use a debit card for online purchases which risked having bank accounts cleaned out.
The report comes across as somewhat alarmist which is perhaps not surprising for a company which is looking to sell security products. However with the report compiled by a survey of 7,066 adults aged 18 and over in 14 countries, the results are nevertheless a sobering reminder of the size of the issue.