Malwarebytes: Women, Minority Users Feel “Less Safe” and “Less Private” Online

Malwarebytes released its new “Demographics of Cybercrime Report,” revealing that a growing number of users feel “less safe” and “less private” online, with women and some minorities believing that their physical world barriers are likewise “transposed into cyberspace.”

Of note, Malwarebytes noted that 50 percent of respondents feel less private online, with 31 percent indicating they likewise do not feel safe.

Women with social media accounts tended to get hacked and send out suspicious messages than their male counterparts (48 percent versus 43 percent), while black and indigenous people are more likely to have their identities stolen (21 percent, compared to 15 percent), with that same segment less likely to avoid financial impact due to cybercrime. Also, despite high-income respondents actually losing more money in cyberattacks, they were less likely to experience a “substantial increase” in stress as a result (13 percent of high-income respondents compared to 18 percent of low-income respondents).

Additionally, just 21 percent of respondents noted that they were either “familiar” or “very familiar” with antivirus tools.

Other takeaways include:

  • No individual surveyed having avoided any form of suspicious online activity, regardless of gender, race, age, income or education level.
  • 35 percent of women feeling safe online.
  • 10 percent of those using antivirus software not aware of threats.
  • 16 percent of women who had their identities stolen indicating it was likely from an earlier physical theft.
  • 47 percent of black, indigenous and people of color avoiding financial impact, compared to 59 percent of all respondents.

Malwarebytes worked with nonprofits Digitunity and Cybercrime Support Network to survey 5,000 users in the U.S., the U.K. and Germany.