Why NSA snooping is making us all paranoid

TRP: What sector has the least amount of consumer trust?

DR: Social networks is the sector that consumers have the least amount of trust in. Only 15% of consumers say today that they trust the sector with their data.

From the earliest days of social networking, consumers have had an intense - and often confused - relationship with the businesses that give them the platforms to connect with their friends and family.

On the one hand, we cherish the immediacy of the information we receive as a result; on the other, we ponder the implications of uploading our whole lives for all the world to see.

Part of the problem is inevitably related to the nature of the information we entrust into their care. There are few other businesses on earth with whom we share so much of our daily lives; from our friends to our passions, our location to our livelihoods. It is all there and, somewhere in our minds, the deep-seated concern that it is there to be taken, too.

Because of that, data security carries an almost impossible level of significance for anyone who uses these channels.

Sorry, we've changed your privacy settings. Again.

Sorry, we've changed your privacy settings. Again.

TRP: And it can have disastrous effect on any business that falls short...

DR: While eyebrows might be raised should a utility let slip the details of an energy bill, and a torrent of complaints greet any retailer that loses a customer's payment details, woe betide the business that loses every aspect of a customer's life – from their private messages to their address.

In many ways, these businesses are facing an impossible burden. The value they provide is in the loyalty they engender – but therein lies the problem, too.

By bottling the whole of a user's life in one place, they offer ultimate convenience alongside untold risk. The key – now and always – is to demonstrate to users that the second of those issues is one that they need never even consider.

Coming just above this were telecoms/media, utilities and local government – who all have a trust level of less than a quarter (24%).

Kane Fulton
Kane has been fascinated by the endless possibilities of computers since first getting his hands on an Amiga 500+ back in 1991. These days he mostly lives in realm of VR, where he's working his way into the world Paddleball rankings in Rec Room.