The UK Cybercrime Report | ESET

The UK Cybercrime Report

Cybercrime is on the rise but where in the UK are you most at risk?

During the coronavirus pandemic, the UK has seen a cybercrime increase of over 19.1% - but where in the country are you most at risk of falling victim to one?

Looking at the worst areas for cybercrime, as well as the types of cybercrime and the percentage increase in each of these areas, we’ve established the areas within the UK that have been most affected by cybercrime over the last year.

With online crime on the rise in the UK, now more than ever, households and businesses alike need to invest in internet security and antivirus software that keep their business, home and home office devices safe and secured.

UK Cybercrime   Types of Cybercrime   Increase in Cybercrime

The Areas In The UK With The Highest Rate Of Cybercrime

London takes first place with 66.3 per 100,000 people being the victim of cybercrimes and it also has the highest number of cybercrimes in the UK, with 5,934 in 2020 amongst its population of 8,952,300.

Hertfordshire comes in second with 63 per 100,000 people being the victims of cybercrimes, with 749 cybercrimes recorded in the last year and a population size of 722,200, while Wiltshire and Kent were tied for third place, with 58.8 per 100,000 residents.

1Metropolitan

66.3

Cybercrimes

per 100,000 people

2Hertfordshire

63.0

Cybercrimes

per 100,000 people

3 Wiltshire

58.8

Cybercrimes

per 100,000 people

Rank
 

Police Force
 

Total number of cybercrimes
 

Population
2019

Cybercrimes
per 100,000 people

The Most Common Types of Cybercrime in the UK

Around three-quarters of reported cybercrimes in the UK fell under ‘hacking’, with just under a quarter involving the installation of computer viruses, malware and spyware.

Hacking social media and email accounts is the most common of all types of cybercrime with 15,367 reports (46.7%) in 2020, followed by computer viruses at 8,103 (24.62%). Personal hacking comes in third with 5,579 (16.95%) in 2020, then hacking extortion at 3,144 (9.55%).

The number of crimes involving the denial of service however were much lower, making up just 0.63% of cybercrimes in total.

Rank

Type of cybercrime

Total number of cybercrimes

Percentage of total cyberattacks (%)

The UK Areas With The Biggest Increase In Cybercrime

The biggest year-on-year jump in cybercrime was seen by Police Scotland, which recorded a 200% increase from 2020 to 2021.

Just nine cybercrimes were reported in January 2020 vs. 27 in January 2021, with a spike of 48 cybercrimes reported in April 2020, during the first UK lockdown.

Coming in second is Cheshire, which saw a 67.6% YoY increase with 34 cybercrimes reported in January 2020 and 57 reported in January 2021. This area also saw a spike in cybercrimes to 62 in May 2020.

Following closely behind is Surrey, with 64.7% increase in reported cybercrime (34 reports in January 2020, 57 in January 2021). Surrey follows closely behind Cheshire with 64.7%, with 34 cybercrimes reported in January 2020 and 57 cybercrimes in January 2021. Surrey also saw a spike in cybercrimes in April 2020 with 95 cybercrimes reported.

London Metropolitan reported the largest number of cybercrimes in April 2020 with 675 cybercrimes reported to the police.

Rank

Area

Jan 2020

Jan 2021

Increase

Increase %

Cybercrimes during
peak month in lockdown (April 2020)

Total Overall Cybercrime Increase in the UK

From January 2020 to January 2021 there was a 19.1% increase in cybercrime, rising from 2,281 at the beginning of 2020 to 2,488 at the start of 2021, which is a rise of over 205 in the space of the last year.

 

Jan 2020

Jan 2021

Increase

Increase (%)

Cybercrimes during
peak month in lockdown (April 2020)

Total:
2,2812,48820519.10%3,742
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