We see this concept all over Europe: There are National Security Awareness Days (or how ever they are called) in a lot of European countries. During these events, the industry (from software to banking to government to …) gets together to raise awareness on the most important trends, criminals explore attacking their victims.
This week in the UK there is the Get Safe Online Week, which is a very good example for me how this can work out. A lot of partners come together this week to drive awareness around different themes in the area of Online Safety.
I quote from their press release:
Today (which was actually yesterday) the UK’s fourth annual Get Safe Online kicks off, a weeklong internet safety awareness campaign encouraging UK computer users to take steps to ensure that they and their machines are protected.
In a time of economic uncertainty, online security is becoming even more important as the growth of the ‘shadow economy’ in stolen identities can mean a person’s assets such as savings accounts can be stolen and emptied faster than ever.
Particularly, the use of ‘phishing attacks’ is rapidly on the rise – where criminals send fraudulent emails designed to trick internet users into submitting their financial or other confidential details. 23% of UK internet users surveyed said that they or someone they knew fell victim to such an attack this year, compared to just eight per cent in 2007.
The image of the geeky hacker is inaccurate: the vast majority of computer crime in the UK is highly organized, with criminals dealing in the buying and selling of personal information used to defraud targets such as full name, address, passport details, driver’s license number, date of birth, bank account details and sort codes, plus credit card numbers and security codes.
Get Safe Online Week aims to give everyone the tools and confidence to enjoy and use the internet safely. In the span of a couple of hours, anyone can learn a few simple steps to remain up-to-date and aware about online safety – a small investment compared to the potential loss and inconvenience if they are instead victims of identity theft.
I think that this is a great initiative, which needs our broad support: