Friday, January 13, 2012

Privacy Issues Survey -- The Economist and Hawaii Results

I like people, global and local issues, and numbers ... so I present a mini-series of surveys on major issues which have been debated at The Economist. I recommend that you visit their site and learn more if the issue presented is of interest to you.

I selected blocks of questions on Privacy, Economy, Technology, Energy and U.S. Politics. I used my several thousand contacts and Internet friends as well as SurveyMonkey to conduct surveys and solicit responses from Hawaii. Both my and The Economist surveys are based on "self selected" respondents so the results may provide trends or indications but they are not scientific.

Obviously the results only represent people with at least a basic level of computer and Internet savvy. However, the results may be sufficiently indicative because most questions along with the careful wording of questions lead to straightforward answer: Agree, Disagree or Do Not Know. The Economist has received a few thousand responses to each of their questions. I post results only when Hawaii surveys exceed 100 responses.

Privacy Issues Survey (click to take the survey)

I grouped four of The Economist questions into a privacy issues survey, as follows:
  • DNA sequence is a person's business, and nobody else's.
  • Loss of privacy from digitizing health care will be more than compensated by increased efficiency.
  • Cloud computing can't be trusted.
  • Government must do far more to protect online privacy.
The results are summarized below.

The immediate observation is that Hawaii responses are more agreeable than The Economist responses. The graph shows that both Hawaii and The Economist responses trend in the same way. By a large margin, Hawaii respondents prefer high levels of privacy for a person's DNA and for online transactions.