Global poll: Majority believe cyber attacks likely to happen

A programer shows a sample of a ransomware cyber attack on a laptop in Taipei, Taiwan, on May, 13 2017. A Pew Research Poll found that most people throughout the world believe it is likely their country will experience a cyberattack. Photo by Ritchie B. Tongo/EPA

Jan. 10 (UPI) — A majority of people polled throughout the world believe their countries are likely to be targeted by cyberattacks, though the respondents were split on whether their country is prepared to handle such attacks, a Pew Research Center poll released Wednesday indicates.

The survey found that 74 percent of people from 26 countries believed it was likely that an attack targeting sensitive national security information will happen or has already happened. Sixty-nine percent believed the same about attacks affecting public infrastructure and 61 percent were concerned about attacks affecting elections.

Americans were among the most likely to say cyber attacks will take place, with 83 predicting attacks focused on national security, 82 percent targeting public infrastructure and 78 percent expressing concerns about elections.

Concerns about election tampering in the United States were skewed along partisan lines, with 87 percent of Democrats saying cyber attacks targeting elections are likely versus 66 percent of Republicans.

Russians generally believed the country will not be subject to cyberattacks, with 44 percent saying such an attack would be likely.

Attacks targeting infrastructure was the greatest concern among older respondents in the United States, Sweden, Canada and Germany.

The countries that responded to the survey were split on whether their governments and other infrastructure were prepared to handle a cyberattack with 47 percent saying their countries are prepared and an equal number saying they aren’t.

Argentina and Brazil were among the most concerned about the ability of their countries to handle a cyberattack with 9 percent and 16 percent, respectively, saying their country was prepared.

Russia and Indonesia were most confident in how their country would respond to a cyberattack at 64 percent in each.

Americans were in the middle of the pack concerning their confidence in combating cyber attacks at 53 percent.

The poll questioned 27,612 respondents between May 14 and Aug. 12 with a margin of error of about 4 percent at the 95 percent confidence level.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here