THE UK National Crime Agency (NCA) has warned citizens that unless they get their technology in order they will be ripe for plucking by hackers.
The NCA said that just under two-thirds of people protect themselves against cyber assaults. This leaves 40 percent of punters looking as juicy as a plum.
It said that there are some real risks out there, some of which are relatively easily countered. However the countering part does not happen regularly enough. This apparently meant that it was time for some numbers and cajoling.
"The internet has radically changed the way we work and socialise, but cyber crime now poses a serious threat to the UK, and the Government has taken action to transform the way we respond," said organised crime minister Karen Bradley by way of introduction.
"Through the National Cyber Security Programme, we have dedicated £860 million over five years to make the UK one of the most secure places in the world to go online."
The NCA recommended preventive measures like the installation of security software, and suggested that people not download content from untrusted websites.
Free software should be "downloaded with caution" it added, and no CDs or USB sticks should be naively trusted.
"The internet is a great place to explore the world and do business, and the majority of people won't experience any problems. But for the minority who leave themselves unprotected, not downloading and updating their security software can be very costly," said Jamie Saunders, the director of the NCA National Cyber Crime Unit.
"The cost to individuals not only hits their pockets but also their personal and family life, which is why it's important that everyone takes steps to protect their computer, tablet and mobile." µ