New research has surprisingly shown it’s tech-savvy Australians who increasingly complacent when it comes to cyber security.

Over half (55 per cent) of respondents say they are unsure how websites hold their personal information while almost a third (32 per cent) said they’re unsure how to recognise a scam or risky website.

The research from PayPal comes in light of National Cyber Security Awareness Week. It surveyed 1,000 connected consumers, who own a desktop or laptop as well as a smartphone or mobile device. According to the research, the majority (67%) of respondents are comfortable entering their personal details online but still do not have the knowledge necessary to secure their personal information, with nearly one in four (23%) Australians saying they have or know someone who has had their details stolen online. Almost one in five (19%) said they have or know someone who has fallen victim to an online scam and had their money stolen, of which, a third were unable to get their money back.

“While Australians have become more comfortable browsing, shopping and connecting online, they are often unaware of the size and impact of their digital footprint,” Adrian Christie, PayPal spokesperson said.

“Our research found that 75 per cent of Australians surveyed said they were concerned about the amount of information they share online, yet we are seeing a strong disconnect between what consumers know and what they think they know.”

The research has revealed that the majority of Australians don’t realise that by creating a social networking profile, email account or a personal account with a retailer, they are expanding their online digital footprint and potentially sharing personal information.

According to the survey results, 81 per cent of respondents said they have a log in for a social networking site but only 27 per cent believed that in doing so they were sharing personal information, demonstrating a clear perception gap in what consumers think they are sharing online. Additionally, 95 per cent of respondents said they had a log in for their email accounts but only 43 per cent thought they were sharing personal information.