Most Australians against ‘data harvesting’

A new survey has found a majority of Australians are against the government and companies collecting and using their personal data. Picture: Getty
A new survey has found a majority of Australians are against the government and companies collecting and using their personal data. Picture: Getty

MOST Australians are opposed to the government and companies collecting and using their personal data, a new survey has found.

Three-quarters of Australians are uncomfortable with apps and websites selling their personal data.

Likewise, three in four Australians are uneasy about government websites passing their details onto businesses.

Peter Lewis from The Australia Institute, which commissioned the poll, said the findings showed Australia’s distrust for business and government.

Most Australians are uncomfortable with apps and websites selling their personal data. Picture: File image

“The findings reflect increased public distrust at the data models at the very heart of the business strategies of big tech organisations like Facebook and Google,” Mr Lewis said on Thursday.

“They also show a breakdown of trust in the government to collect information in the public interest.”

The institute is looking to develop better guidelines around the use of personal data, which Mr Lewis described as the oil of the information economy.

He said it was confounding that people were uncomfortable with the use of their data, despite consenting to it.

The poll found only 19 per cent of Australians read the full terms and conditions of websites they visit.

The Department of Home Affairs recently suggested face-scanning Australians to confirm their age before watching porn or gambling online.

More than half of Australians are against the idea, the poll found.

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