Fake News Named Biggest Global Cybercrime Concern

Cybercrime is one of the biggest concerns of the global populace, with fake news ranking highest among such risks, according to a new report from Lloyd’s Register Foundation.

The UK charity, funded by the eponymous technical and business services organization, this week released the results of its first World Risk Poll, compiled from interviews with 150,000 individuals in 142 countries.

Some 71% of respondents cited cybercrime as one of their biggest concerns, with almost all internet users fearful about some aspect of it.

The biggest concern in this category was fake news (57%), which came ahead of online fraud (45%) and cyber-bullying (30%). Unsurprisingly the results were slightly different depending on country and region.

For example, in the UK more respondents were concerned about fake news (62%) and online fraud (69%). Other Western European countries were even more likely to worry about internet fraud, including Portugal (78%), France (74%) and Spain (71%).

Concerns over cyber-bullying were strongest in low income economies thanks to their large population of youngsters. Around a third (34%) of respondents between the ages of 15 and 29 said they worry about online bullying, compared with about a fifth (21%) of those aged 65 and older. Women (32%) were slightly more concerned then men (28%) in this regard.

Lloyd’s Register Foundation CEO, Richard Clegg, said the poll represents the views of 98% of the world’s population, including many people whose voices have never been heard before.

“Knowing what people think will help us to identify gaps between peoples’ thoughts about risk and their experiences of threats to their safety,” he added.

“We can use this data to work with communities and empower people to take action most likely to reduce harm — that saves lives and helps them feel safe.”

Another global poll out this week, from the World Economic Forum (WEF), also cited cyber-threats as one of the biggest concerns, this time for business leaders.

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