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Survey: 91% of Americans Have Concerns About Online Privacy
[September 04, 2014]

Survey: 91% of Americans Have Concerns About Online Privacy

AUSTIN, Texas --(Business Wire)--

WP Engine, a leading SaaS (News - Alert) content management platform for websites and applications built on WordPress, announced today the results of its WP Engine Online Privacy Study. The survey, conducted by Harris Poll among 2,100 U.S. adults and developed by WP Engine using the company's expertise in content management and website hosting, examines consumer privacy concerns. The study discovered that 91% of Americans are concerned about their online privacy, while nearly all (95%) Americans would take some kind of action if they felt their online privacy was being threatened. Popular solutions consumers say they are most likely to take when online privacy is threatened include changing a password (79%), deleting or unregistering from an app (57%), and reporting a company (56%).

Other actions online users in the U.S. would take include:

  • Change email address (48%)
  • Change credit cards (48%)
  • Delete all social media accounts (42%)
  • Change their name (7%)
  • Move to a new home address (3%)

What's Next for Online Privacy?

Additionally, the WP Engine research found that nearly nine in ten Americans (88%) think that online privacy will be one of the biggest concerns for themselves over the next 10 years, for several reasos.

More than half believe so because we are becoming increasingly reliant on internet-enabled devices (59%), because social networking is exposing more of our personal information (57%), and because the government has too much access to information on its citizens (51%).

Additional reasons for concern among many Americans include:

  • Because we will be storing the majority of our personal data online/in the cloud (50%)
  • Because our locations can be easily tracked via GPS-enabled smartphones (50%)
  • Because our digital profile is more important than ever before for jobs, dating, and our private life (39%)
  • Because more companies are using the facial recognition software to recognize citizens' faces (24%)

The online platforms that Americans have most privacy concerns about include:

  • Social media networks - 66%
  • Email - 56%
  • Web browsers - 52%
  • Search engines - 45%
  • Social photo sharing platforms - 35%
  • Mobile apps - 30%
  • Online dating apps/dating online - 27%
  • Instant Messaging apps - 23%
  • Micro-blogging sites - 23%
  • Disappearing photo sharing apps - 22%
  • Smart wearable devices - 18%
  • Online games - 17%

"In today's world of constantly streaming information and amplified volume of voice across online channels, it's only natural that privacy has become a critical concern among Americans, and no doubt, the world at large," said Heather Brunner, CEO of WP Engine. "It's encouraging to see that as the online threat landscape changes over time, users are evolving with it, taking steps to protect themselves from harm."


This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of WP Engine from June 19-23, 2014 among 2,100 adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact

About WP Engine

WP Engine is a leading SaaS content management platform for websites and applications built on WordPress. The company powers thousands of websites and apps built on the WordPress platform delivering a fast, reliable and secure web experience. All levels of users including bloggers, marketers, SMBs and large corporations rely on WP Engine's platform to keep their websites up and running. The company's exceptional customer service team specializes in quickly solving technical problems, and creating a world-class customer experience ensuring that each user's WordPress site continues to perform at its full potential. Founded in 2010, WP Engine is headquartered in Austin, Texas and has offices in San Francisco, California.

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