30 March 2018

Reuters: “Americans less likely to trust Facebook than rivals on personal data”

Some 41 percent of Americans trust Facebook to obey laws that protect their personal information, compared with 66 percent who said they trust Amazon, 62 percent who trust Google, 60 percent for Microsoft and 47 percent for Yahoo.

The Reuters/Ipsos poll was conducted online in English throughout the United States. It gathered responses from 2,237 people and has a credibility interval, a measure of accuracy, of 2 percentage points.

Chris Kahn, David Ingram

Remarkable how Facebook manages to be the least trusted company when it comes to privacy and still retain so many recurring users. It’s even lower in the public perception than Yahoo!, whose security was constantly breached in recent years. Granted, Facebook’s track record on privacy is very shady and the company is struggling with two recent scandals involving data harvesting by Cambridge Analytica and the collection of personal calls and SMS on Android. Unfortunately, the public has a short memory on these issues and I suspect Facebook will land again on its feet.

US Poll tech trust to protect personal information

More surprising was the relatively poor standing of Apple in this poll: a trust rating a little over 50%, lower than Google, Microsoft and Amazon, and distrust over 30%! That despite Apple’s constant focus on presenting itself as the sole guardian of user privacy in a world full of data hoarders. The simplest explanation I can think of is that the poll is reflecting the US smartphone market: iPhone users trust Apple with their data and distrust others, while Android users distrust Apple and trust Google instead.

Curran said she knows online retailer Amazon.com also collects her information for targeted marketing, but that it is less annoying because it is a shopping site, not a place for personal conversations.

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