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Britons report privacy fears as GDPR deadline looms

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With the GDPR deadline now less than 100 days away – the deadline for compliance is May 25 2018 – a new study shines a spotlight on concerns around data protection and privacy among the British public.

Over a third (34%) of Britons say that they plan to exercise their right to be forgotten when GDPR comes into a force, according to a consumers confidence and attitude tracking study conducted on a quarterly basis by the  the7stars.  Only one in five (19%) report feeling confident that their personal data is used in the best possible way by business, while a further three in five (58%) question how much data businesses hold on them.

The research also highlights a lack of knowledge among customers of the changes being ushered in by the regulation, with only one in four (27%) of respondents agreeing they have an understanding of what GDPR is and how it affects them.

Poor understanding of the regulation is further underscored by the study finding that 75% of respondents believe the UK government needs to make clear what GDPR is and how it is going to affect the British public before it is implemented. This view was particularly acute among those aged 65 and over (88%).

Despite the concerns Brits have generally about data protection and privacy, 58% of respondents think the regulation is a positive step towards protecting their data and privacy, with Londoners the most positive (65%).

Businesses could also see a benefit, with 32% of customers saying they will trust brands more with their data as a result of the implementation of the regulation, and those aged 18-24 (40%) report to agree the most with this change.

Frances Revel of the7stars said: “With implementation day now less than 100 days away, time is running out fast for brands, advertisers and marketers to get their data ducks in a row. Given the importance of data to business operations, the fact that over a third of people are looking to exercise their right to be forgotten represents a real threat that cannot be ignored.

“However, there is still time for Government and brands to come together to tackle consumer concerns around data protection and privacy head on, and the brands who get this right stand to gain the most.”

Photo credit: Sikov (Fotolia)

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