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Broadband users are more at risk from security threats online than ever before, it has been claimed.

Previously, the consensus of opinion was that people could reduce their risk of picking up viruses by steering clear of sites with for instance gambling and pornographic content.

However, according to Kevin Hogan, of Symantec Security Response - the firm behind Norton anti-virus software - avoiding these sites is no longer a way of mitigating risks since all sites are now vulnerable to hackers.

He said: "The notion of there being good and bad neighbourhoods on the web is really gone. Any potential website could have been hijacked, unbeknown to you and also even the organisation running the website."

News of Mr Hogan's comments comes as reports surfaced yesterday of a site purporting to be an online dating site, but which in fact was a front for hackers to engage in identity fraud.

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