Countries Ranked According to Online Risks

The considerable variation in risks faced by internet users worldwide has been laid bare by a new study by anti-fraud vendor SEON.

Combining data from five cybersecurity indices and indicators, the researchers ranked 100 countries across the world according to their respective cyber-risks. These indicators included data from the National Cyber Security Index (NCSI) and the Global Cybersecurity Index 2020, which rank countries according to their cybersecurity measures.

The researchers also analyzed the Basel AML Index: 9th Edition, which focuses on the risk of money laundering and terrorist financing in different countries, and the Cybersecurity Exposure Index (CEI) 2020, which measures how at-risk internet users are in each country. Finally, they examined the strength of anti-cybercrime legislation in each country via the Global Cyber Strategies Index.

Taken together, Denmark was rated the safest nation to spend time online, achieving a cyber-safety score of 8.91. The researchers noted Denmark scored especially well on the Cybersecurity Exposure Index.

Germany (8.76) was second place, which had a high Global Cybersecurity Index score and comprehensive laws and regulations. In third was the US (8.73), followed by Norway (8.46), the UK (8.44), Canada (8.35), Sweden (8.22), Australia (8.16), Japan (8.09) and Netherlands (8.00).

Conversely, the country that ranked lowest for internet safety was Myanmar (2.22), scoring poorly across the indices. In particular, it had hardly cybersecurity legislation in place to help disrupt the activities of threat actors. Myanmar was followed by Cambodia (2.67), Honduras (3.13), Bolivia (3.21) and Mongolia (3.25).

SEON also highlighted the most common types of cybercrime in the US in 2020, taken from the US Internet Crime Complaints Center. The three highest were phishing and pharming (32.96%), non-payment/non-delivery (14.87%) and extortion (10.48%).

Additionally, the study demonstrated the growing prevalence of data breaches. In 2005, there were 157 breaches, which compares to 1001 in 2020, a rise of 537.58%.

SEON stated: “While the combination of public and private sector efforts to tame the digital Wild West has made it more difficult for online fraudsters in some respects, cybercrime remains a persistent threat for internet users.”

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