A third of UK consumers willing to pay for more safety online

Brits are concerned about the safety of their private information online, and are willing to pay to make sure their data stays safe, a new survey has shown.

A new survey from YouGov reveals that 72 per cent of consumers in the UK feel concerned about their private information online, including the safety of their emails, files and pictures. In light of this, nearly a third of these consumers would be willing to pay to ensure that their personal data is better protected online.

“There is no doubt that it should be the responsibility of advertisers or publishers to ensure the protection of online consumer privacy,” Ben Williams, Head of Operations at Adblock Plus, comments. “But, with an evident lack of priority focusing on privacy and consumer preferences from both sides, online users are being forced to take control for themselves.”

Williams says that users put a lot of trust into social media sites, blogs and other websites, and that it’s of great importance that these sites don’t abuse their users’ trust.

“Social media sites, like Facebook, Twitter, as well as blogs and websites, have become such an integral part of so many lives, and consumers do place a great deal of trust in them. As a result, it’s important that these sites don’t take advantage of their users’ trust by allowing duplicitous or intrusive advertising to affect them – or at least not to make it difficult to opt out of it as we’ve seen with the likes of Facebook’s targeted Exchange ads.”

Trust can be gained by offering more transparency, he continues, adding that the users are concerned about invisible trackers lurking behind websites.

“The problem stems from the lack of transparency online – this is the reason why so many users feel anxious about what is going on behind their screens. Users are concerned about the risk of invisible trackers lurking behind their web pages, reading their private information and tracking their every online move. Unfortunately, many of these users who are anxious about their data and their privacy just aren’t aware of their options, and this is why awareness of adblocking software is important.

Williams concludes by saying that concerned people should take privacy matters into their own hands, and look for applications and extensions which help secure online information and browsing data.