People More Willing to Share Data Online Than with New Dating Partners
New study from the information encryption experts at Echoworx
People are more willing to divulge their personal data in an email than they are to share that same information with potential dating partners, according to a new study from the information encryption experts at Echoworx.
The study, commissioned by Echoworx and conducted by market research company OnePoll in August 2017, surveyed 2,000 adults from across the United States. It found that while most people won’t reveal personal details, including their full names, to a potential partner until after an average of two and a half dates, they will readily provide sensitive information online.
“It’s interesting that those surveyed were more willing to send personal information across the web than to divulge facts to a person they are getting to know. It reveals that people are not aware of the risks they are taking in case of a breach,” says Sam Elsharif, VP Software at Echoworx.
Most Americans take just 20 seconds to decide whether an email in their inbox is safe, 28 seconds to determine if it’s safe to enter personal data into an online forum and 31 seconds to decide whether a website is safe to make a credit card purchase from, the study found. Yet when it comes to dating, most aren’t comfortable disclosing their home address until after an average of four dates and it takes six and a half dates before they’ll discuss salary. One in three say they wouldn’t feel comfortable about talking salary after any amount of dates.
They don’t have the same hesitation when it comes to divulging personal details of their lives online. Three-quarters of survey respondents admitted they have shared sensitive or personal data electronically and on average, they share three pieces of personal information by email each week. Thirty-eight per cent have sent information online to a healthcare provider, 35 per cent to a bank and 25 per cent to a government official.
Even though they may regularly share personal data online, most survey respondents question if it’s safe to do so and more than a quarter of them are unsure what encryption is, despite it being an important security measure.
“When it comes to sensitive personal data, like your social security number and banking details being shared online, it’s important to be cautious and verify the privacy policies, real needs, and legitimacy of the companies requiring it,” says Sam Elsharif of Echoworx.
Surprisingly, five per cent of survey participants say they feel comfortable disclosing their social security number with a possible partner after just one date – unfortunately encryption can’t help with that type of personal disclosure.
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