Over the past several years, Facebook has introduced initiatives to better educate users about online privacy. This includes routine privacy check-ups, simpler settings and more. (Of course, the company only took these steps because of its own privacy foibles, but still.) However, according to the results of a new study from the Pew Research Center, the majority of Americans still don’t have a grasp on even basic digital knowledge.
Among the study’s troubling findings, it was revealed that 49 percent of Americans aren’t clear on what private browsing does, while only 30 percent knew that when “https://”
precedes a website address, it means the site’s info is encrypted. However, perhaps the most alarming stat was that just 29 percent of people know that WhatsApp and Instagram are owned by Facebook.
This last number is troubling because of the lack of trust people already have in the company. Facebook routinely ranks last or close to it in polls of companies that people trust with their data. However, those same people may be freely sharing with Instagram and WhatsApp — two companies that share data with Facebook. More than anything, this is just further proof that Facebook’s data-gathering powers are almost unbeatable. Still, users deserve to know who, exactly, they’re sharing their data with.
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