April 26, 2010 By Hilton Collins
The Web can be a dangerous place for those who aren't careful. Cyber-criminals can steal identities and cash from the reckless, and users can embarrass themselves and harm their professional reputations if they post or lose track of questionable photos. Despite these risks, young adults seem content to conduct online activities without giving security much thought, according to recent research.
A recent poll of 1,000 18- to 24-year-olds found that at least half of their age group is willing to sacrifice security when it comes to file-sharing, social networking and online shopping.
"They have heard their entire lives to be careful online, and while most of them have had an incident, the damage of that incident hasn't been very lasting or permanent. So most of them are making a risk decision in their head, and then after that, they're not even revisiting that decision as time goes on," said Sam Curry, chief technology officer of marketing at RSA, the security division of EMC that commissioned TRU Research to research the behavior of young people online, polling from February 26 to March 8.
"They decide, 'Ah, I've heard about viruses, heard about hackers. It's old news.' Then the next time around, they're not even thinking about the risk equation anymore," Curry said.
The findings, disclosed in the "Generation Y Online Security Survey" were released on April 20. Data included the following:
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