Survey finds 69% of consumers across the US and UK believe cyberattack methods will become more sophisticated in the year ahead, while only 6% feel defenses will improve to protect against them.
Rising Concerns and Anticipated Threats
New research released from ThreatX, the leading API and application protection platform, revealed that the vast majority of consumers are concerned that cyberattacks will increase or remain consistent over the coming year (97%) and become more sophisticated (69%), outpacing the ability of cyber defenses to protect against these threats. In fact, only 13% reported feeling that they are going to be completely protected from cyberattacks in the year ahead.
“Every year, analysts, security, and technology experts put out their predictions on where the cybersecurity industry is going, the biggest threats likely to up arise, and and coming themes and technologies to watch out for, but we hardly ever gauge consumer sentiment on this topic”
Key Worries and Industry Targets
ThreatX’s survey of 2,000 consumers across the US and UK sheds light on consumers’ predictions for cybersecurity in 2024, including their biggest concerns, and their plans to adjust their own practices. Results found that the majority of consumers (94%) predict that cyberattack methods become more difficult to defend against in 2024; at the same time, only 6% believe new cybersecurity defenses will be able to defend against these new and rising threats to ensure data remains protected and secure.
The results show that consumers are paying attention to the rising threat of cyberattacks and how the companies they do business with respond to and defend against them. Of the consumers surveyed, the majority (64%) are most worried about the rising threat of ransomware, followed by 51% worried about the volume of nation state attacks increasing, and 46% stated they are most concerned about identity theft in 2024. Half (50%) of consumers said that financial services will be the most targeted industry by cyberthreats in the next year, followed by SaaS/tech (45%) and government (22%).
“Every year, analysts, security, and technology experts put out their predictions on where the cybersecurity industry is going, the biggest threats likely to arise, and up and coming themes and technologies to watch out for, but we hardly ever gauge consumer sentiment on this topic,” said Gene Fay, CEO at ThreatX.
“What we’ve found is that consumers are keeping a pulse on cybersecurity trends and have serious concerns around how their sensitive information is protected. As they look at the companies that they do business with, it’s clear they’ll be expecting more robust cybersecurity measures be put in place to meet the evolving threats of tomorrow.”
Consumers are upping their personal security in 2024: 70% plan to be more consistent with their remote work security practices to ensure they increase online security next year. Consumers plan to adopt security-related behaviors including: different passwords for different accounts (56%), two-factor authentication (55%), and avoiding connecting to insecure or public Wi-Fi (53%).
Trust in organizations that consumers do business with is questionable: 87% of consumers are at least somewhat concerned about whether companies they do business with – from banks to retailers to healthcare providers – will keep their data safe in 2024, but 33% are most confident that security vendors will best be able to defend and protect sensitive information against cyberattacks, while 25% believe that it’s up to the government to ensure protection. When it comes to an individual company or brand, only 12% of consumers believe they are best able to protect consumer data from cyberattacks.
There is a generational divide with Gen Z less concerned about security: One in four Baby Boomers feel that attack methods will become more sophisticated and harder to prevent next year, while only 5% of Gen Z consumers feel the same way. What’s more, despite the ongoing shifts to remote work environments for enterprises and consumers, 97% of Gen Z consumers don’t plan to take any measures to increase their personal and professional security.
“The findings from ThreatX’s survey highlight where cybersecurity experts’ and consumers’ minds intersect. Results showcase that consumers aren’t turning a blind eye to the potentially damaging effects cyberthreats pose to their personal data,” said Jeremy Ventura, Director, Security Strategy and Field CISO at ThreatX. “Vendors across all industries spanning retail, financial services, cybersecurity, healthcare, education and more, must ensure 2024 cybersecurity investments and strategies factor in consumer concerns, which includes making sure the tools adopted meet the challenges of looming cyberattacks threatening sensitive information.”
About the Survey
ThreatX partnered with Dynata, an all-in-one solution for insights, activation and measurement to create, deploy and analyze this topic. The survey was compiled of 2,000 respondents, including 1,000 US-based and 1,000 UK-based consumers ages 21+. The survey took place between September 28 through October 4, 2023.
ThreatX is managed API and application protection that lets you secure them with confidence, not complexity. It blocks botnets and advanced attacks in real time, letting enterprises keep attackers at bay without lifting a finger. Trusted by companies in every industry across the globe, ThreatX profiles attackers and blocks advanced risks to protect APIs and applications 24/7. Learn more at https://www.threatx.com
This press release first appeared on businesswire.com