IQ News: Net Privacy Taps Consumer Hot Button

Since DoubleClick’s retreat from its plans to marry offline and online data, Internet privacy has become the current hot-button topic. A survey issued this week by Active Research, a Burlingame, Calif.-based online market research firm, reported that 52 percent of the 922 people surveyed said they trusted e-tailers with their personal information compared to 31 percent of respondents trusting search engines. “I was a little bit surprised [that consumers] trusted retailers more than publishers and review sites,” said Active Research CEO Tom DuBois. “I thought they would trust the media more.” Among the report’s other findings: Men, by a 2 to 1 margin, felt government should be involved as a watchdog on Internet privacy; the top three pieces of information people didn’t want to reveal online were their social security numbers, telephone numbers and their names; and 18-24 year olds were more trusting with their personal information than older adults. “When you get over 45, trust starts to drop off,” said DuBois.–Christine Spart