For the past century, the number of shark attacks on people has been on the increase. Since the spate of maulings off New Jersey's shores back in 1916 which inspired Spielberg's Jaws, every decade sees more fatal incidents, prompting mass panic and drastic action in many countries, including Australia and Hawaii.
But before we go on, let's get things into perspective. Shark attacks are far still from common: in fact, you're more likely to die from drowning in your bathtub or falling out of bed than from being attacked by a shark.
Having said that of course, shark attacks in certain areas are far more likely than others. Australia, for example, has more than its fair share, and, after the deaths of six people in the past two years, the federal government has responded by ordering a dramatic culling in certain areas (whether or not this will work or not remains to be seen: critics have pointed out that the culls involve encouraging sharks to come towards popular beaches - which can do more harm than good).
So are there things you can do to reduce the risk of being attacked by a shark? The obvious thing to do is to avoid swimming or surfing in areas where they like to prey: our slideshow below lists the top ten shark hunting grounds.
Video: Great white shark stalks boat on Bondi Beach
Is this the most dangerous beach in the world?