The Truata Global Consumer State of Mind Report 2021 gathered the opinions of 8,000 consumers, spread through South Korea, Brazil, the UK, the US, and France. It aimed to understand what challenges people faced regarding their data privacy. It was found that many of them were anxious about their privacy and the security of their data.
Rising Concerns Due to Digitization
Those surveyed mainly expressed concerns related to the rapid introduction of digitization triggered by the Covid-19 outbreak. Sixty-four percent of the consumers, just more than two-thirds, opined that their use of technology had risen manifold due to the pandemic. Sixty-one percent of the users were now keen to see a reduction in how much data companies store about them after assessing what data they had to share in carrying out daily activities.
Almost half of those surveyed (forty-eight percent) felt that their data footprint was no longer in their control. Around fifty-six percent were anxious that they would completely fail to track their digital presence. They said that they were not only eager to but were also trying to regain control of things.
Personal Data Exchange: Sacrifice to Stay Connected
The Truata CEO, Felix Marx, observes how the Covid-19 outbreak has sped up the pace of revolutionizing how we live our lives, business operations, and how global society has been functioning. One will either "go digital or go dark," which leaves users with no option but to match steps with the change and embrace the internet and technology to remain connected in their lives.
Felix says that while initially, an acceptance of personal data exchange as a compromise to stay connected in the digital economy was noted among users, it didn’t last very long. With much of everyday life being digitized, doubts about user safety and security have increased, bringing things to the brink, as highlighted in the Global Consumer State of Mind Report. After sensing that they have lost control over their information, users are trying to win it back, demanding protection of their records in the digital world.
Lessons for Tech Companies
There are many lessons for tech companies with user data that have become the foundation that online platforms and digital brands stand on. It has been found that many of the users surveyed were keen to engage with the companies that would make it possible for them to manage control over their data.
Users were also critical of the personalized offers and targeted advertising created after tracking their surfing habits following them online. Many were also eager to know about proper data governance.
Organizations that can successfully keep in tune with the changes and manage to meet user expectations will gain an edge over their competitors in the days to come. Consumers, too, have been putting across the message that the companies take their privacy concerns seriously. It was noted that while just under a third now preferred incognito browsing, over a third had opted out of mailing lists and were rejecting cookies on websites.
From the companies’ point of view, concerns about data accuracy and how reliable the insights gained from it arose after what respondents in South Korea said. The respondents there revealed that a good way to manage online privacy was to create several online personas for multiple services.
With consumers having outlined what they seek for increased data privacy, companies should now take the initiative to allay their fears. They need to adopt new technologies and automation that reassure consumers. Companies should come ahead to break free of privacy paralysis, taking advantage of the opportunity to improve brand image.
Increase your Privacy
As our dependence on the internet to carry out everyday activities rises, snooping on our surfing behavior has risen as well. We are bombarded with targeted advertising, a result of our online profiles having been created by marketers. To avoid this invasion of privacy, you can use a VPN. A Virtual Private Network hides IP address and browsing habits with the help of encryption. These practices ensure your online anonymity and offer more privacy.
The Covid-19 outbreak has forced us to go online even to carry out daily activities like shopping for groceries. It has triggered concerns among users about the privacy and security of the data they share online. They feel that they have lost control over their personal information and are keen to regain it. Under the circumstances, companies should take the initiative to reassure them by adopting new technologies and automation.