Only one in five internet users believe they are under threat from anything online, according to a new index.

In Kaspersky Lab’s first Cybersecurity Index, just 21 per cent of web users said they currently think they are threatened by anything online, despite experts’ frequent warnings.

At the same time, 29 per cent have fallen victim to cyber criminals’ schemes, including eight per cent who have had their accounts hijacked and 22 per cent infected by malware.

The final statistic in the index also shows users to be underestimating the cyber threat, with only 60 per cent using security solutions on all their internet-connected devices.

This puts the inaugural index at 21 per cent, 29 per cent, 60 per cent.  “We created the index to draw the attention of users, the media and vendors to the issue of cyber security,” said Andrei Mochola, head of consumer business at Kaspersky Lab.

“Many users today, we believe, do not expect to come face-to-face with cyber threats, so they fail to install security solutions on their devices and behave carelessly online. This makes them easy targets for cyber criminals.

“The index reflects the results of this approach. Today, 29 per cent of people have been affected by online threats. We are calling on all internet users to improve their cyber-savviness and adopt a responsible approach, both for their own protection, and to that of their loved ones. Security, we believe, must be shared.”

The first index reflects other recent surveys on consumers’ cyber awareness.

Half of university students run no security software on their devices, one report found – although almost half would be willing to attend seminars to learn cyber basics.

One in ten consumers fell victim to cyber fraud in the last year, another survey revealed.

However, the increasing prominence of cyber security in film, television and video games – including the popular series Mr Robot – is helping to boost users’ awareness.

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