Increased concerns of digital integrity in the wake of the pandemic2021-03-16
The Swedish people have become more concerned about how their personal data is handled digitally as a result of the Corona pandemic. These are the findings in a new study on Swedish people’s views on digital integrity which was conducted in collaboration with Insight Intelligence and researchers at CTF, Service Research Center.
Concerns about how digital personal information is handled have increased significantly in recent years and have become apparent during the pandemic, as peoples’ lives have become more digital. Twelve percent say they have become more worried about how their personal information is handled as a direct result of the pandemic, according to the survey.
The results show a clear correlation between increased knowledge and concern. The proportion who are aware that information is collected and the proportion who are worried about how it is handled have both doubled since 2015.
"The increased concern is not necessarily due to us sharing more information, but rather to an increased understanding of the extent, to which it is collected," says Lukas O Berg, CEO of Insight Intelligence.
"It is interesting to see that while the concerns have increased, over 80 percent say that they often use services that are free of charge but at the same time are based on personalized advertising", says Charlotte Bäccman, researcher at CTF.
In general, Swedish people’s behavior is somewhat paradoxical as some of the most regular behaviors online, such as reading news and using search engines, social media and online shopping, are the services we have the least confidence in, she says.
"This may seem contradictory, but it rather shows that even if the trust in the service providers is low, the perceived value of using the services is high," says Charlotte Bäccman.
It does not seem to be reluctance to sharing information that is the reason for the safety concerns, but rather not knowing how the information is handled, and if it is used for purposes one are not comfortable with. More than every other person is willing to share personal data to contribute to research and community development.
"Development of digital services is increasing at a faster rate, and more and more people use digital services and share personal information. In our research, we are interested to find out how this affects user experiences, integrity and interests and how to develop digital services that provide increased security for the user," Charlotte Bäccman concludes.
The survey is based on responses from 1000 Swedish people between the ages of 16 and 70 who were interviewed through Sifo's nationally representative web panel in January 2021. The results are published in the report "Delade Meningar". The survey is conducted by Insight Intelligence in collaboration with CTF, The Swedish Tax Agency, The Swedish Public Employment Service, IAB Sweden and RISE.