11 Jun 2012

Cyber crime costly for New Zealand

10:28 pm on 11 June 2012

Internet security experts estimate online crimes cost New Zealand $625 million last year.

Cyber Security Awareness Week, organised by internet security advisers Netsafe and the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, was launched at Parliament on Monday.

Netsafe executive director Martin Cocker says in the past two years more than 70% of New Zealanders have been victims of some sort of internet crime.

Mr Coker says the cost of such crime includes money that is stolen though credit card fraud and identity theft, as well as the need for computer security upgrades.

Smart phones are increasingly becoming a target. A Netsafe survey conducted in 2011 found almost half the respondents had once lost their cellphone.

It says people often save their passwords for online banking and email access on smart phones, and these can be accessed by others if the phone is lost.