Attitudes towards data and privacy revealed by survey with only 17% saying personalised ads are ethical

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12th February 2019 14:08 - Information Technology

Attitudes towards data and privacy revealed by survey with only 17% saying personalised ads are ethical: A survey to find out more about attitudes around the collection of data and privacy has revealed just 17% of respondents believe personalised adverts are ethical. 

Over 6,000 people were polled across Europe (UK, France and Germany) as well as in the US for the poll by RSA Security. The survey also found that only a quarter (24%) believe tailored newsfeeds are ethical - with almost six in 10 (56%) believing them to be unethical - a figure that is even higher in the UK at 67%.

The RSA Data Privacy Survey 2019 is the second survey of its kind and polled respondents from Gen Z (18-24) to Baby Boomers (55+).

The survey found that three-quarters now limit the volume of personal information they post online and 57% of UK respondents have noticed an increased data-consent pop-up when browsing compared to a year ago - a larger percentage than the average across all countries polled (43%).

It found that 28% believed using a social media 'like' history to recommend content is unethical, compared to 55% who say this is unethical - again a figure that is higher in the UK with 61% of respondents believing it is such. Out of all the age groups, younger respondents (Gen Z) said they use 'likes' to shape their personal online experience.

When it comes to tracking activity online for the purpose of tailoring ads, 36% believe it is ethical for companies to do so, while only 22% would willingly offer data for the purpose of improving user experience online. Four in ten (41%) said they would not be happy to volunteer personal data to improve their browsing experience.

Data breaches were also asked about with 36% of all respondents saying their personal information has been compromised within the last five years and 39% saying they were unsure.

The full report can be accessed here 



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