35 Percent of US Adults Use a VPN but Only One out of Three Know What it Does, Studies Reveal!

One thing that has changed over the past decade and a half is that people have started to realize just how many privacy issues there are online. Previously the only way in which you could end up defending yourself from someone that might just be interested in stealing your precious data would be to avoid going to various sites, but now there are plenty of tools that you can use which can help you browse the web with a high level of privacy and VPNs tend to be the most popular thing for people to look into in this regard.

There has been a noticeable increase in search queries related to VPN (Virtual Private Network) deals and discounts. Reportedly, US internet users have started taking matters such as online security and privacy very seriously.

A survey of 1,666 US adults (conducted prior to the emergence of COVID-19) and an additional 1,834 US adults (conducted in February 2021) was carried out by CouponFollow, a coupon engine established in New York. The purpose of these studies was to figure out how Americans perceive their online security and privacy.

The results revealed that about 69% of participants are cautious about their data security while using a public internet connection. Moreover, about 64% are concerned about the same when their devices are connected to their home network.

65% said that they have a fear that their ISP might sell sensitive data such as their medical and financial information.

As for online privacy, nearly 47% of US adults show concern while using a public internet connection and 30% are worried even when their devices are connected to their home network.

When it came to cybercrimes, over 35% of the participants said they know someone, including them, who has had their social media account compromised. This percentage rose to 48% in the case of Millennials.

Back in October 2020, the Marriot hotel chain was handed a hefty fine by the UK’s data privacy watchdog for a breach that could have given cybercriminals access to the data of over 339 million guests.

About 52% of Millennials and Gen Z claimed to have had their password stolen or know someone who experienced the same.

Since Baby Boomers spend considerably less time online than the generations that followed them, only 12% of them reported to have had their password stolen and just 20% stated that their social media account was hacked.

And even though 35% of Americans use a VPN, one-third of them don’t even know what it does. Also, men are more likely to be familiar with the applications of a VPN. But nearly half of the Baby Boomers (49%) and 40% of active VPN users have yet to learn the meaning of VPN.

Interestingly, the respondents noted that they consider accessing the internet via work gadgets safer. This confidence may be due to the security layers guarding the workplace devices. In such circumstances, only one in three (32%) are concerned about their security and one in five (18%) are worried about their privacy.

Coming back to VPN, it was revealed in the survey results that around 12% of the US adults started using a VPN last year and 21% activated one so they can work from home without worrying about any of the aforementioned risks.

Browsing (45%), work (45%), and online shopping (21%) are the main reasons why one out of three Americans (35%) use a VPN.

It goes without saying that lately, there has been a significant surge in data breach attempts. Therefore, internet users not only in the US but across the world must be concerned about their online security and privacy. If you don’t want to get your data compromised, you have to be very careful while using the internet.
It turns out that the past year has seen a huge boom in VPN usage among Americans, and it is important to note that the pandemic has probably ended up playing quite a major role in this sort of thing. The fact that people have been stuck at home for over a year has resulted in them using the internet a lot more often, and this has revealed to them just how easy it can be for them to be tracked especially if they are using a public internet connection for this sort of thing.
A survey conducted has revealed that the fact that people are working from home has made VPNs a lot more prominent as well. After all, when you work from home you would need to try your best to safeguard the various data that is coming into your workstation, and you don’t have the corporate grade security that most office spaces have to offer which results in a far more vulnerable situation if you think about it.
Survey respondents also referred to a nebulous political unrest that they seem to fear. There are no real details on what this unrest might actually be, but suffice it to say that it is having an impact on the American populace and it is making them so fearful that they are willing to start using VPNs in order to obtain a fair amount of security. Younger people also tend to be far more likely to use a VPN in the first place, and about half of these respondents say that they had been hacked at some point or another or they were aware of someone in their social circle who had ended up being hacked. It’s pretty clear that this is a problem that is getting a lot more serious as time goes by, so the fact that people are starting to look into using VPNs to protect themselves is a good sign since it means they are taking their privacy into their own hands.

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