Most travellers, including holiday makers and business travellers, are soft targets for online financial crime when abroad, says a report.
About 45 per cent of the travellers believe that losing money is one of the top three threats they may face abroad, and credit card compromise is considered to be among top three threats faced by 35 per cent of the users, a research by Kaspersky Lab revealed.
It also found that there is a real danger when it comes to losing money when travelling, as 22 per cent of respondents have experienced such a loss and 8 per cent have had a card compromised while in a foreign country.
“In today’s connected world, we are able to travel easily, for work or pleasure, and stay connected while we do. This ability brings with it amazing and exciting opportunities, but also exposes us to dangers if we are not careful. It’s all too easy to connect via potentially insecure Wi-Fi abroad then continue our normal habits of banking and shopping online, without stopping to think about the consequences of what we are doing,” Kaspersky Lab Head of Consumer Product Management, Elena Kharchenko said.
The research said fewer respondents named device infection (11 per cent) or online fraud (20 per cent) as one of their top-three worries whilst travelling.
That’s despite the fact that 18 per cent have been a victim of cybercrime when abroad.
Among these, 6 per cent have been hit when banking online and 9 per cent when shopping online.
It’s not surprising that travellers are becoming victims of cybercrime as 82 per cent connect to public Wi-Fi anywhere when abroad and, using this potentially risky connection, which can be intercepted and used by cybercriminals, 61 per cent of consumers bank online and 55 per cent shop online, the report pointed out.
In addition, it said, 42 per cent of users admitted that they shop online with their credit card either the same amount, or more than what they do at home.
Without appropriate protection in place, this behaviour is exposing users and their money to unnecessary danger, but only 34 per cent of the users apply a secure connection (VPN) when connecting to public Wi-Fi, while 18 per cent do nothing at all to stay protected.