Brazilians fear for the security of their data

The majority of users of digital platforms have suffered some kind of digital threat.
Written by Angelica Mari, Contributing Writer

According to a new survey, Brazilians are concerned about the security of their data despite knowing that companies they interact with keep some type of information about their consumption and leisure habits.

According to the research carried out by Datafolha Institute on behalf of Mastercard with 1517 users of digital services in January 2021, 92% of respondents said they are aware companies retain their information to some degree. However, on a scale of 1 to 10, where 10 is "very secure", 5.1 is the average score given to how secure respondents feel their information is in digital environments.

The survey carried out with the goal of measuring the level of concern regarding the security of consumers within data and information exchange environments found that only 13% consider their data to be very secure, while 21% consider their data to be insecure.

According to the survey, the fear of cyber attacks is high among Brazilian users, which suggests that 73% of respondents reported having suffered some kind of digital threat, such as receiving fake messages from companies and stolen passwords.

As a result of these incidents, many of those polled have taken additional security measures, the study noted. More than 80% of the survey respondents said they avoid clicking suspicious links, while 75% avoid using public Wi-Fi networks, and 64% have different passwords for each of the accounts they have on digital platforms or apps.

Social networks were considered by respondents as the least trustworthy environments, while hospitals, medical examination clinics, schools and colleges are the institutions that respondents have the greatest level of confidence in.

Moreover, nearly 70% of respondents stated they know that when they access a social network, shop over the internet or make financial transactions online, the data is stored by the companies they are transacting with, and that data can be used to better target offers, benefits and monitor consumption habits.

Brazilians are willing to allow the collection of their personal data, as long as they give something in return, according to a separate study published by cybersecurity firm Kaspersky in June 2020. Some 43% of respondents said they would share sensitive private data to ensure better ranking in social rating systems, discounts, or to receive customized services.

Brazilian consumers are also more willing to share their social media profiles in exchange for other benefits, the Kaspersky study noted, such as protecting their job, finding a better place to live, a place at a good school for their children or getting a visa.

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