If you find yourself blogging about your trip or sending an email update to family and friends if you happen to be visiting Turkey or Russia, you may want to be a little more vigilant than normal. According to TechCrunch and sourcewire.com, these are the two riskiest countries for surfing on the Internet.
The study — conducted by security company AVG — compiled data from over 100 million PCs in 144 countries which had AVG anti-virus software enabled. It found that in Turkey, the software was activated to protect one in ten PCs, and in Russia it was one in fifteen. One of the safest countries to browse the web was Japan, where only one in 404 PCs was attacked.
AVG spokesperson, Roger Thomson, had this to say:
Our research tells us a lot about the [behavior] of web surfers worldwide. Internet users in Turkey, Russia, the Caucasus and South-east Asia for example show disproportionately higher rates of being attacked than the global average of 1 in 73. There are a number of reasons for this. Some of it may be down to a tendency to access semi-legal or illegal download sites, while some of it probably is down to being less cautious when it comes to sharing links and files online. Another factor is the popularity of Internet cafes and people generally sharing computers. However, it is safe to say that even in these countries, a minority of users account for a large proportion of attacks.
So what do you do if you find yourself in a “risky” country for web browsing? Here are some general tips to avoid becoming compromised:
- Disable file and print sharing
- Only use secured Wi-Fi connections
- Log out of any account on any shared computer
- Clear the browser’s cache when you’re finished
- Disable your wireless card when not in use
- Only download from reputable websites
- Have up-to-date anti-virus software installed
[Image: Don Hankins / Flickr]