Computers are damaging our health, thanks to rising stress levels induced by so-called "PC pests" like spam, pop up ads and viruses. More than four in five (86 per cent) of British computer users get irritated and stressed by PC problems, according to a survey commissioned by security firm Symantec. Only 14 per cent of those quizzed had the Zen-like calm to say problems with their PCs never irritate them.
The survey of 500 UK adults, conducted by Ipsos Research, came up with five irritants most likely to make a users blood boil. In order of annoyance these were: slow performance and system crashes (cited as worst irritant by 23 per cent of those quizzed); "spam, scams and too much email" (20 per cent); pop up advertisements (15 per cent); viruses (14 per cent) and files getting lost or deleted (four per cent).
And just as different PC pests annoy people in different ways, so our reactions vary from mild annoyance to extreme anger. According to the survey, 39 per cent of us are likely to have an extreme reaction to computer-induced stress, including "swearing, shouting and even violence". Pressing random keys out of sheer frustration "in an attempt to make something happen" is also a popular response to problems. And while 40 per cent of us will go for the pragmatic approach - looking to resolve a problem ourselves or seeking help from others - almost one in five of us will eventually give up on their machines when problems arise.
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News source: The Reg