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Ofcom: UK Citizens Less Concerned About Dangers Of The Internet

The latest piece of research from Ofcom has revealed that the overall level of concern and worry regarding the Internet has fallen over the last six years.

Despite the prevalence of tracking and data mining by all the big Internet players such as Google and Facebook, it would seem that UK adults aren't so concerned about privacy on the Internet these days.

In 2005, 70 per cent of those questioned were worried about being on the net, compared to 50 per cent according to Ofcom's latest study.

Ofcom's Adults Media Use and Attitudes report shows that confidence levels in the net are at a high, with 84 per cent stating they're confident they won't come to any harm being online.

Unsurprisingly, folks are spending more time online, with the average user now surfing the net for 15 hours every week. That's up 50 per cent on 2005, with 8 out of 10 adults admitting to going online via multiple devices (up 20 per cent on 2005).

The proliferation of smartphones and social networking sites has helped to get more people online, with 59 per cent of those questioned saying that they had a social networking profile. Two-thirds of those were frequent users who visited the site(s) on a daily basis.

Ofcom notes that security risks are still being run by the online population of the UK. A quarter of those on a social network admitted that their personal details, such as their date of birth, could potentially be seen by folks they didn't know.

16 per cent said that they share their contact details with anyone, or friends of friends.

While most users are aware of terms and conditions, and privacy policies held by sites, a quarter say they never read them - and only a quarter admit to reading them thoroughly. We'd say that was a generous estimate, too...

Darren Allan

Darran has over 25 years of experience in digital and magazine publishing as a writer and editor. He's also an author, having co-written a novel published by Little, Brown (Hachette UK). He currently writes news, features and buying guides for TechRadar, and occasionally other Future websites such as T3 or Creative Bloq and he's a copy editor for TechRadar Pro. Darrran has written for a large number of tech and gaming websites/magazines in the past, including Web User and ComputerActive. He has also worked at IDG Media, having been the Editor of PC Games Solutions and the Deputy Editor of PC Home.