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McAfee Alert: One in Every Six Personal Computers – Zero Protection; Canada is 7th Least Protected Country

PC stat source: McAfee Global Unprotected Rates Study, 2011

PC stat source: McAfee Global Unprotected Rates Study, 2011

Today, McAfee announced the results of a global study ( http://sawebdev.ca/mcafe /Global_Unprotected_PCs/ ) that set out to determine the percentage of personal computer (PC)  owners without any working security software and protection. Out of the 24 participating countries, Canada ranked as the 7th least protected country.

Key findings from the study include:

  • Eighty-three (83) per cent of global PC owners have working basic security protection
  • Seventeen (17) per cent of PCs scanned had no anti-virus installed or it was expired
  • Canada is the 7th least protected country, with 17.9 per cent of consumers browsing the Internet without any protection:
    • of this group of users, 9.48 per cent of consumers have no protection installed
    • and 8.45 per cent of consumers have installed but disabled security, placing the country in the number two spot for this category behind Singapore

PRESS RELEASE

Consumer Alert:  McAfee Finds One in Every Six Personal Computers Have Zero Protection; Canada is 7th Least Protected Country; 17% of the World’s Personal Computers Are Unprotected

MARKHAM, Ontario, May 30, 2011 – Lack of consumer PC protection is a global problem.  McAfee, the world’s largest dedicated security technology company, today revealed findings from a global study set out to determine the percentage of personal computer owners without any working protection. In a study that analyzed data from voluntary scans of an average of 27-28 million computers per month, McAfee researchers found 17 per cent of the world is browsing the Internet completely unprotected.1  Out of the 24 participating countries, Canada was found to be the 7th least protected country while the United States landed in the top 5.

Browsing the Internet on an exposed computer not only increases the risk of identity theft and data loss, but it can contribute to the spread of harmful programs and nasty viruses. Even if you think your personal computer has basic protection installed, it is important to make sure your security software stays up-to-date. Research also found many of the scanned computers have disabled or expired software. In Canada, 8.45 per cent of consumers have installed, but disabled, security software. In comparison, 7.07 per cent of the United States has disabled security software installed on their computers.

Key Findings:

  • Eighty-three (83) per cent of global PC owners have working basic security protection1
  • Seventeen (17) per cent of PCs scanned had no anti-virus software installed or it was expired
  • Finland came out on top as the most protected, with only 9.7 per cent of PCs lacking any security protection
  • Singapore came out at the bottom with 21.75 per cent of consumer PCs completely unprotected
  • Canada is the 7th least protected country, with 17.9 per cent of consumers browsing the Internet without any protection and 82.1 per cent of consumers with active security protection.
    • Of those users without protection:
      • 9.48 per cent of consumers have no protection installed
      • 8.45 per cent of consumers have installed, but disabled security software, placing the country in the number two spot for this category behind Singapore
  • The United States is the 5th least protected country, with 19.32 per cent of Americans browsing the Internet without any protection:
    • 12.25 per cent of consumers have zero security protection installed
    • 7.07 per cent have security software installed but disabled
  • Spain had the highest percentage of PCs without any installed basic security protection at 16.33 per cent
  • Singapore had the highest percentage of users, 11.75 per cent, with installed, but disabled, security protection
  • Consumers globally say 27 per cent of their digital files are “impossible to restore” if lost, and not backed up properly, and had an average value of US $10,014.

Expert Quote:

“The freedom to browse the internet comes with the added risk of unwanted exposure, and cybercriminals are preying on unsuspecting victims,” says Steve Petracca, SVP and GM of consumer, small business and mobile at McAfee.  “With 17% of the world walking around naked on the internet, it is critical that consumers update their virus protection before it’s too late.”

“We’re consistently seeing data breaches and new malware discoveries in record-breaking numbers, and we’re delighted that the majority of consumers are taking proactive steps to ensure that at the very least, they have basic security protection installed on their PCs,” said Brenda Moretto, Canadian Consumer Sales Manager at McAfee. “Protecting digital devices and securing Internet activities and personal information against cybercrime and malware not only benefit each of us personally, but also discourage illicit activity and preserve the integrity of the Internet.”

Available Product Solutions:

McAfee AntiVirus Plus instantly detects and blocks computer viruses and helps to stop Web threats before they are downloaded to a consumer’s PC. This suite includes anti-virus, anti-spyware, anti-phishing, identity and firewall protection, as well as PC optimization tools. The suggested retail price for McAfee AntiVirus Plus is currently CDN $29.99.

McAfee makes it easier than ever for consumers to protect all of their devices with award-winning McAfee All Access, which protects all of a consumer’s digital devices for CDN $99.99. It is a single solution that protects consumers’ PCs, Macs, smartphones and tablets from a variety of threats – wherever they connect. Consumers stay safe when they shop and surf on the Internet, visit social networks, click on online images or use their email-no matter what device they’re using.

1 Basic security protection is defined as working anti-virus, anti-spyware, and firewall technologies.

Note: Due to rounding, country data may show a variance of +1%.

About McAfee

McAfee, a wholly owned subsidiary of Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC), is the world’s largest dedicated security technology company. McAfee delivers proactive and proven solutions and services that help secure systems, networks, and mobile devices around the world, allowing users to safely connect to the Internet, browse and shop the Web more securely. Backed by its unrivaled Global Threat Intelligence, McAfee creates innovative products that empower home users, businesses, the public sector and service providers by enabling them to prove compliance with regulations, protect data, prevent disruptions, identify vulnerabilities, and continuously monitor and improve their security.

McAfee is relentlessly focused on constantly finding new ways to keep our customers safe. http://www.mcafee.com

McAfee Canada is headquartered in Markham, Ontario, with regional offices across Canada. The company’s Consumer Software Research and Development facility is based in Waterloo, Ontario.

NOTE: McAfee and Safe Eyes are trademarks or registered trademarks of McAfee or its subsidiaries in the United States and other countries.

Other names and brands may be claimed as the property of others.

About the Survey

McAfee analyzed security scans voluntarily submitted by consumers globally using a free diagnostic tool for PCs called McAfee Security Scan Plus. It works with most security software programs and actively checks a consumer’s computer for threats, anti-virus software and firewall protection. It is for Windows operating systems only.  Between 27 – 28 million scans took place each month globally. No personal information was collected as part of these scans.

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