Why Americans Don’t Trust the Government to Safeguard Their Data

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Many consumers do not have much faith in federal agencies keeping their personal information safe, according to a new report.

Nearly 40 percent of people polled in a recent survey don’t think their personal information is safe in the hands of the federal government.

And that was before the massive breach of millions of federal employee records at the Office of Personnel Management -- one of the largest government data breaches -- came to light.

According to the survey, 39 percent of respondents said they think it’s “likely” personal information of theirs stored by government agencies will be accessed without their consent before the year is through, according to the survey by Unisys Security Insights, which measures data security concerns throughout the world.

The high level of worry among consumers associated with federal agencies is likely because of the wave of recently reported cyberattacks, the study said.

Out of seven industry categories, including banking and the airline industry, respondents were most concerned about personal information stored by retailers. The second highest percentage of respondents cited government agencies.

The majority of respondents who said they worried bout agencies keeping their personal information safe were those who were middle aged and older, according to the survey.

The survey polled over 1,000 adults last April.

“With an ever-increasing hyperconnectivity of consumers across various digital platforms, the traditional mechanisms to protect sensitive personal data against advanced attacks are proving to be insufficient,” the report stated.

Increasingly, organizations are turning to multifactor identification methods to authenticate trusted users. Some are even turning to biometrics, including fingerprints, voice recognition and even the vein structure in a person’s hands, according to the report.

(Image via wk1003mike/Shutterstock.com/Shutterstock.com)

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