WASHINGTON, DC — A new USA Today/Gallup poll that found most Americans are worried about privacy and viruses when using Facebook or Google confirms an earlier poll by Consumer Watchdog and underscores the need for a Do Not Track mechanism to protect consumers online, the nonpartisan, nonprofit group said today.
The poll was released as Rep. Jackie Speier, D-CA, was preparing Do Not Track legislation, expected to be introduced later this week. Her bill would give the Federal Trade Commission power to implement and enforce Do Not Track regulations.
The USA Today poll found that nearly seven out of 10 Facebook members surveyed — and 52% of Google users — say they are either "somewhat" or "very concerned" about their privacy while using the world's most popular social network and dominant search engine.
A poll by Consumer Watchdog last summer found that 90% of Americans want legislation to protect their online privacy and 80% support a Do Not Track mechanism. Another 86% want a single-click button on their browsers that makes them anonymous when they search online.
Read Consumer Watchdog’s poll here: http://insidegoogle.com/2010/07/consumer-watchdog-poll-finds-concern-about-googles-wi-spy-snooping/
Read the USA Today poll here: http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/2011-02-09-privacypoll09_ST_N.htm
“It would behoove both Facebook and Google to support Do Not Track legislation,” said John M. Simpson, director of Consumer Watchdog’s Inside Google project. “Both companies need consumers’ trust to thrive. The polls show people are worried when they use their services. A Do Not Track option would give consumers control of their data and restore trust. It’s a win-win for consumers and online businesses.”
Consumer Watchdog has been working to protect consumers’ online privacy rights and educate them about the issues through its Inside Google Project. The goal has been to convince Google of the social and economic importance of giving consumers control over their online lives. By persuading Google, the Internet’s leading company, to adopt adequate guarantees, its policies could become the gold standard for privacy for the industry, potentially improving the performance of the entire online sector.
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Consumer Watchdog, is a nonprofit, nonpartisan consumer advocacy organization with offices in Washington, DC and Santa Monica, Ca. Consumer Watchdog’s website is http://www.ConsumerWatchdog.org. Visit our new Google Privacy and Accountability Project website: http://InsideGoogle.com.