Internet users in the United States vastly underestimate how often their home networks are targeted by cyber threats, according to a new Comcast report.

Comcast’s Xfinity Cyber Health Report, which surveyed 1,000 nationally representative U.S. adults 18 and older, found that 95 percent of respondents underestimated the volume of attacks they face each month. The average volume indicated by respondents was 12 attacks per month. In reality, xFi Advanced Security blocks nine times that amount, or an average of 104 security threats per month per household.

“The cyber threats facing even the most lightly connected homes have grown so numerous and so complex, that ordinary people can barely keep track, much less protect themselves,” said Noopur Davis, Comcast chief product and information security officer. “That’s why it’s essential that we provide people with smart, powerful tools, like xFi Advanced Security, that can spot and stop threats before they ever make it inside the home.”

The report, which was based on the results of the September survey conducted by Wakefield Research and threat data collected by the xFi Advanced Security platform, also summarizes threats xFi Advanced Security has blocked for Xfinity Internet customers and the devices in their connected homes, providing an industry view into threats experienced by consumers.

Key report findings include:

• According to xFi Advanced Security data, the top five most vulnerable devices in connected homes are computers and laptops, smartphones, networked cameras, networked storage devices and streaming video devices.
• 96 percent of consumers surveyed were not familiar with how to answer six basic true/false cyberthreat questions.
• What many people don’t realize is that connected devices can pose a security risk. Cyber criminals target them because many have little or no security protection and devices without screens can be more easily hacked without the consumer even knowing it.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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