Only 14% of smartphone users this year believe that their app stores only offer privacy-safe apps. That is down significantly from 25% in 2011, reveals the “2012 US Online and Mobile Privacy Perceptions Report.” Faced with a mobile app they distrust, 85% of smartphone users do not download it, while 8% limits the information they share with the app, 4% limit their usage of the app, and just 3% report they do not change their behavior.
Smartphone Users Uncomfortable Sharing Many Forms of Data
Smartphone users feel safest sharing their gender with mobile apps, with 49% saying they would consent to do so, with age (36%) and email (35%) following. On the other end of the spectrum, just 1% would consent to sharing their list of contacts, 3% their photos and videos, and 5% their home addresses. Only 6% of app users would consent to sharing web-surfing behavior, a key element of online behavioral advertising (OBA), and 58% expressly indicate they do not like OBA. Finally, 28% say they would not consent to sharing any personal data with mobile apps.
University of California-Berkeley researchers in July found a similar reticence about sharing personal contacts. While 82% of mobile owners store contact information on their devices, 81% of device owners would probably (30%) or definitely (51%) not allow social networking applications to mine those contacts for friend suggestions, and 93% would probably (18%) or definitely (75%) not allow a coupons app to mine the list in order to offer coupons to their contacts, per findings.