Americans Are Complacent About Online Data Breaches

November 1, 2016

Users of email, social networks, and other online services are aware of possible dangers that data breaches cause, but surprisingly are less concerned about it in 2016, a survey reveals.

Observer recently published a report titled Fears of the Web’s Dark Side—Strangely—Are Not Growing, which reveals:

People’s fears about their email being hacked have receded somewhat since 2014, bizarrely. Across the 1,071 Americans surveyed, that particular worry receded from 69 to 71 percent.

The survey commissioned by Craigconnects also reveals that online users are no longer very concerned about their data getting leaked online that may be used for identity theft; despite large scale breaches like Ashley Madison. Users, as the survey points out have accepted it as a trade-off for the convenience of Internet.

The reason for the complacency setting in probably lies in the fact that people have realized:

The business of social media company is built upon gathering as much information as possible about users and using that information to sell ads,” Michael W. Wellman, CEO of Virgil Security wrote the Observer in an email. “If the service is free, it’s the user that’s being sold.

Nearly 7 percent Americans are victims of identity theft. This, however, has not dissuaded them from taking precautionary measures to protect their identity online. Most users are aware that identity theft can be used for stealing money from bank accounts, but there are other dangers as well. For instance, prescription medication can be obtained legally using details of an identity theft victim. And then there are uses of the stolen data that only Dark Web actors know where such data of millions of victims is available for few hundred dollars.

Vishal Ingole November 1, 2016
Sponsored by, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph


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