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Survey shows consumers rank online privacy a top priority

        

A recent survey conducted by TRUSTe, an online and mobile privacy management solutions provider, showed consumers are more aware than ever before about mobile and internet security, and rank it as a top priority.

The online survey, which was compiled from the responses of 1,033 U.S. adults and 554 smartphone users, showed 94 percent of consumers consider privacy an important issue. In addition, 58 percent dislike online behavioral advertising (OBA), which gives advertisers a one-up as it uses computer monitoring software to keep track of what a person searches for.

The survey also showed 42 percent of smartphone users saw privacy as a top concern, and 85 percent reported they would not download an application they do not trust.

What’s more, 60 percent said they feel more concerned about their online privacy than they did a year ago. This illustrates more businesses need to make privacy and security a top priority when developing new systems and software.

Plus, people are taking their security into their own hands, as 69 percent said they trust themselves when it comes to their personal information, which is up from 45 percent in 2011. Also, 76 percent reported they do not allow companies to share personal information with a third party, and 35 percent said they have stopped doing business with a company because their website rose some privacy concerns.

When it comes to OBA, 50 percent opted out of OBA when they could to protect their privacy, and this nearly doubled from 27 percent in 2011. Also, 40 percent said OBA made them uncomfortable. In addition, more people are aware of what OBA is (83 percent) compared to last year (70 percent).

“Big data is exploding, causing monumental changes in the way that personal information can be accessed and used online – through more pervasive and powerful mobile devices, emerging cloud services and the rapid growth of online behavioral advertising,” said Chris Babel, CEO of TRUSTe. “Our 2012 findings show that managing consumer concerns through good privacy practices must remain on the forefront in order to stem mistrust. With increased understanding about choices, the survey also shows that consumers react more positively to the potential value of new online technologies, such as OBA.”

        

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