OSLO, Feb. 21 (Xinhua) -- Norwegians have become one of the favourite targets of cyber crime and are easier to be cheated than Swedes and Danes, newspaper Aftenposten reported Thursday.
Mapping of over 120 million users in 45 countries, conducted by software company Symantec, showed that the only nation that is more exposed than rich Norwegian citizens are Saudi Arabians, the report said.
Norwegians are exposed four times higher than Swedes and six times high than Danish citizens to so-called "phishing" attempts.
"Norway must have been far up the list for many criminal groups last year when it is so highly exposed. I do not think Norway has been so high on the list before," Snorre Fagerland, security analyst in Symantec, told Aftenposten.
The reason for Norway being targeted is because it is one of the richest countries in the world and criminals can earn more money if they get hold of Norwegian data, said Fagerland, who together with his colleagues analysed 2.4 billion emails daily in 45 different countries.
On the "black market", where stolen data is purchased and sold, a stolen Norwegian credit number with personal information may be worth 45 U.S. dollars.
"The criminals are primarily concerned with profitability. When they enter a country like Norway, it requires investment. They must translate texts, reconnaissance and customize the attacks," Fagerland said.
The way the "phishing" attacks are designed shows that the computer criminals have learned to master Norwegian language.
At Symantec's list of 45 countries, Norway comes in third place among countries with the highest proportion of malicious links in the emails.
The survey showed that 12.8 percent of the malicious e-mails contained such fake links in 2018, which is more than twice as much as, for example, Denmark.
Norwegians are also very high placed on the list when it comes to getting spam e-mails and "ransomeware" on mobile phones, when criminals lock mobile phones and then require ransom.