InternetNZ has released the results of research commissioned by market research company UMR saying it found 72 percent of respondents to be aware of the risks around personal security on the Internet, and therefore reinforced InternetNZ’s focus on Internet security and privacy.
However a perhaps somewhat surprising finding was that cyberbullying emerged as the number one concern. When asked to rate their concerns about various aspects of the Internet on a scale of one to five, 48 percent gave cyber bullying a ‘one’, ahead of ‘threats to the security of personal data’ (45 percent) and ‘too much screen time for young children’ (44 percent).
When these responses were combined with ‘somewhat concerned’ the percentages were: ‘threats to the security of personal data’ (72 percent); ‘too much screen time for young children’ (72 percent); cyber bullying (69 percent).
InternetNZ focussed on the security aspects, with CEO, Jordan Carter saying: "With new advancements on the Internet - and with the release of many network connected household devices - it is necessary that security is a top priority for Internet users. This is why security and privacy is one of our main work areas and InternetNZ will continue to have a focus on this in coming years."
He added: "This research provides InternetNZ with a framework for our yearly planning, ensuring our focus areas are aligned with views of the public. We will continue to fund this research each year to build a useful resource and determine trends over time."
Ninety four percent of respondents reported checking the Internet at least once a day; a third said they were online constantly.
In a blog post Carter said the organisation had committed to commissioning research about Kiwi attitudes to the Internet. “We reinforced this commitment when we signed an agreement with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) in May about our role as the designated manager for .nz,” he said.
He added, “For InternetNZ, it will input into our work planning and be an important filter in deciding what to do and where to focus our efforts. It helps keep us accountable - people can compare the work we do with what the public sees as the most important.
“We will do this research again next year, and thereafter, to build a useful resource. It will help to demonstrate what people think today, and how their thinking changes over time.”
The quantitative findings in the survey were based on telephone interviews with 750 New Zealanders aged 18 and over. Details can be found here.