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Future Cyber Attacks May Be Seen As The New ‘Normal’

In Sweden, for example, 82 percent of those aged 50 or older feared a cyberattack on infrastructure, compared with 53 percent of those aged 18 to 29.

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Cyberattacks
Stijn Vanveerdeghem, left, an engineer with Cisco, shows graphics with live wireless traffic to FedEx employee Barry Poole during the RSA Conference in San Francisco. VOA

Cyberattacks on elections, public infrastructure and national security are increasingly being seen as the new normal, according to a global survey on cybersecurity.

And in some of the world’s largest economies, people think their governments are not prepared.

The survey of more than 27,000 people across 26 countries conducted by the Pew Research Center found less than half of the respondents, 47 percent, believed their countries are ready to handle a major cyber incident.

A median of 74 percent thought it was likely national security information would be accessed. Sixty-nine percent said they expected public infrastructure to be damaged. And 61 percent expected cyberattacks targeting their country’s elections.

Israel and Russia ranked as among the most confident populations, with more than two-thirds of survey-takers in those countries saying their governments are prepared for a major cyber incident.

Cloudhopper, cyberattacks, internet
The picture shows a warning sign for “cyber threats ahead”.

The three sub-Saharan African countries in the survey — Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa — were generally optimistic, with more than half of those polled saying their nations were prepared for a cyber incident.

Brazil and Argentina were the least confident, with just nine percent of Argentineans responding their government was prepared.

In key economies such as Germany and Japan, more than half of the respondents expressed concern they were ill-prepared to deal with cyberattacks.

United States

The Pew survey found expectations for cyberattacks ran highest in the United States, where there have been more than 100 major cyber incidents since 2006.

Almost 80 percent of U.S. respondents expected damage to public infrastructure, breaches of national security information and elections tampering.

But while more Americans than not say the country is prepared for cyberattacks, 53 percent to 43 percent, feelings on cyber preparedness changed depending on political affiliation.

More than 60 percent of Republicans thought the United States is prepared for cyberattacks as opposed to 47 percent of Democrats.

Cyberattacks
An employee works near screens in the virus lab at the headquarters of Russian cybersecurity company Kaspersky Labs in Moscow, July 29, 2013. VOA

Politics, age

The Pew survey detected similar trends in many of the other countries in the survey.

In Russia, for example, about 75 percent of those who support President Vladimir Putin are optimistic about handling a cyberattack, compared to 61 percent of non-Putin supporters.

The level of concern about cyberattacks also varied according to age.

In many of the Western countries surveyed, Pew found older people were likely to be more concerned than younger people.

In Sweden, for example, 82 percent of those aged 50 or older feared a cyberattack on infrastructure, compared with 53 percent of those aged 18 to 29.

Also Read: Huawei Set to Invest $2 bn on Cybersecurity Over The Next Five Years

The Pew survey was conducted in-person or via telephone between May 14 and August 12, 2018.

The 26 countries surveyed are: United States, Canada, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Britain, Russia, Australia, Indonesia, Japan, Philippines, South Korea, Israel, Tunisia, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Argentina, Brazil and Mexico. (VOA)

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Web Cookies Double ad Revenue For Publishers Online: Tech Report

According to the study, there is a 52 percent reduction in advertising revenue to publishers when cookies are eliminated through Internet user opt-out protocols

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cookies
Web cookies nearly double ad revenue for online publishers leading to profits. Pixabay

Irritating for users most of the times, web cookies nearly double ad revenue for online publishers and if users decide to opt out of online ads, there is over 50 per cent reduction in advertising revenue, new research has found.

A computer cookie, also known as a web cookie, Internet cookie or browser cookie, represents data packets that are sent to your computer to help a website track your visits and activity.

As a result, the site is better able to track items in your shopping cart when browsing an ecommerce site, or personalize your user experience on the website so that you are more likely to see content and ads you want to see.

Researchers from Boston University, Leeds School of Business at the University of Colorado and Shaoyin Du of University of Rochester explored the real value of the cookie to websites, advertisers, and found that cookies represent higher revenue to online publishers.

According to the study, there is a 52 percent reduction in advertising revenue to publishers when cookies are eliminated through Internet user opt-out protocols. On the other hand, when cookies are present, publishers’ ad pricing doubles.

The study, to be published in the journal Marketing Science is authored by Garrett Johnson of Questrom School of Business at Boston University; Scott Shriver of the Leeds School of Business at the University of Colorado; and Shaoyin Du of the Simon Business School at the University of Rochester.

According to them, while most Americans decide not to opt-out of online advertising, 0.23 per cent of American online ad impressions arise from users who decide to opt out of online ads. These users, in effect, have opted out of the use of cookies to track their online navigation of a particular site.

Cookies, Internet, Background, Pay, Matrix, Networking
Computer cookies, also known as web cookies, Internet cookies or browser cookies, represent data packets that are sent to your computer to help a website track your visits and activity. Pixabay

The authors calculated that the inability to behaviorally target opt-out users results in a loss of roughly $8.58 in ad spending per American opt-out consumer. “Though few users tend to opt out, we note that certain types of users are more likely to opt out, and that has certain consequences for the advertising industry,” said Du.

ALSO READ: Here’s Why Faking Emotions At Work Can Be Harmful

“We find that opt-out rates are higher among users who install non-default browsers, such as Firefox and Chrome, which tells us that opt-out users are likely more technologically sophisticated. We also note substantial variation in opt-out rates by region by city and state and by certain demographics,” Du informed. (IANS)