Fewer Americans Are Worried About Digital Privacy in 2022

Staying safe online can’t be ensured if digital privacy is difficult to come by, and that is why so many Americans cited digital privacy as a major concern last year. In spite of the fact that this is the case, it seems that the tide is starting to turn, with 42% of Americans saying that they are worried about digital privacy in 2022 as opposed to 48% in 2021 with all things having been considered and taken into account.

This data comes from a study conducted by the Advertising Research Foundation (ARF), and it showed that steps taken by major tech companies have managed to assuage some of the concerns that users might have. These steps include adding new privacy settings, and Apple’s default off option for third party data tracking has likely done a lot to give users peace of mind as well.

With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that this decline, while definitely pertinent, is not a huge decrease from last year. 42% is still a huge proportion of the American populace, and around 30% of users said that very common tracking scenarios represented a misuse of their personal data and a violation of their privacy online.

Some data tends to have more of an impact than others. Users were more likely to feel like their privacy was being violated if the data being mined was of their location, live or otherwise. On the other hand, data surrounding items that users may have left in their cart was considered less of a privacy invasion, likely because it does not contain any personal or sensitive information and the benefit that it provides to the end user is quite clear.

Consumers are also developing preferences about how they want to be grouped in data categories. Being classified or categorized based on age and gender was perceived as less invasive than if mobility data or locations were being used. Brands need to come to terms with the new normal and find a new way to do business without this data.

Read next: How to protect your sensitive data when browsing online
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