NEWS28 July 2020

Seven in 10 people worry about data sharing, study finds

Asia Pacific Data analytics Europe Latin America Middle East and Africa News North America Privacy Trends UK

NETHERLANDS – Seven in ten people worldwide are concerned about sharing their personal data, according to a study by data and insight trade association Esomar and the Worldwide Independent Network for Market Research.

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The study, which surveyed more than 25,000 people in 40 countries, also showed more than half of the global population have been a victim of data misuse.

North America was the continent with the highest proportion of people concerned at sharing personal information, with 78% according to the research.

Asia Pacific had 75% of the population concerned at sharing data, 74% in Europe, 69% in Africa and 68% in Latin America.

But less than half of those in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) shared concerns about data sharing.

The study also showed that more than two-thirds of people felt their data was valuable to companies, but less than half considered sharing personal information as vital and necessary in a more connected world.

The researchers said that this could mean that many consumers consider data collection to be a one-sided deal in favour of businesses.

Fewer than half of people in the Americas, Europe and MENA were aware of what happens to their personal information after it was shared with data collectors, the study found.

Around 70% of people in Asia Pacific, Europe and North America also told the study they did not like current privacy practices of most data collectors.

Approximately 80% of North Americans have been the victim of data misuse, according to the study, with three in five people in Latin America and Africa and two-thirds of Europeans.

Finn Raben, director general of Esomar, said: “Although this study paints a worrying picture for the future of data collection, we know that people’s views about sharing their data really change when they trust the organisation collecting it.

“And you can build trust; consumers respond well to companies that give them control over their data and are clear and transparent.”