updated 09:40 pm EDT, Sun July 22, 2012
Only a third of users trust Facebook with personal data
Facebook lags behind other web giants with regard to the degree of trust users place in the social network. This according to a new Harris poll released last week. As The Washington Post reports, Facebook came in behind both Amazon and Google when survey participants were asked how much they trusted certain companies with their personal data.
Harris Interactive polled 2,262 US adults online this year, asking about their level of comfort with how assorted companies use their data. Only about a third of Internet users said they were comfortable with the way Facebook handles personal information for ad-targeting purposes. By comparison, 66 percent were comfortable with the way Amazon uses past purchase data to recommend products. Forty-one percent of respondents said they trust the way that Google goes about serving ads based on prior web searches.
The Harris polls findings are similar to the results from an AP-CNBC poll from last month. That poll found that a considerable majority of Facebook users were uncomfortable with using the social network to purchase goods and services. Facebook's trust issues have landed the world's largest social network in legal trouble as well; a group of users filed suit against Facebook in May, alleging that the site continued to track their Internet activities even when they had indicated that they did not want to be tracked.