Surveys show that people are concerned about their privacy and the use of their personal information. Yet at the same time they give away information in the Internet lavishly. To unravel this paradox, the British think-tank Demos conducted a people’s inquiry into personal information.
For the inquiry 40 people were informed about developments in the field of data protection throughout a month. Based on this information they gave recommendations to policy-makers, businesses and consumers.
The inquiry shows that consumers care about their privacy, but that they are not hysterical about perceived threats to liberty or privacy. They emphasised that they wanted to be in control of their data and that therefore effective and consumer-friendly consent mechanism are needed. At the same time they want to trust that businesses and public institutions treat their information carefully. To ensure this, they support tougher penalties for misuse and effective enforcement.
The inquiry was supported by the British consumer organization, Consumer Focus, and the British Information Commissioner’s Office.
For further information, see: http://www.demos.co.uk/publications/privatelives