Who do consumers trust with their data?
Protip: If you’re going to share your login credentials for entertainment accounts like Netflix or Hulu, as many millennials are doing, make sure your password is unique and not also used for other accounts.
Though some may have the mistaken notion that a millennial is anyone under the age of forty, it is true that younger generations have come of age in a time of unprecedented digital risk. It’s an interesting experience, when a generation suddenly in their adult lives encounter a whole new type of headline bombardment—in this case the data breach. Perhaps akin to Gen X’ers and stories about that newfangled Internet.
As far as Netflix goes, according to research by Radware, around 31% of millennials are sharing account information, even if they use the logins for other accounts, such as online banking. I sincerely hope that isn’t the case. That a generation as otherwise tech savvy as it often shows would not make such a basic error.
Another tidbit from the study that I found fascinating is that when searching to see if their personal data has been compromised in a breach, millennials are more likely to use the dark web (14%) than they are Troy Hunt’s perfectly accessible HaveIBeenPwned website (13%). That’s like pirating a video game you already got for free.
Of course, as the age demographic that uses Facebook the most (over 25% of users), millennials have had little choice but to become aware of risks to their information, when you have such realities as a major social media platform now a regular topic of controversy, regarding data protection practices.
(As an aside, in the wake of Facebook’s latest scandal, Tim Cook took the opportunity to assure Apple users that so little of their own data is collected, it could not possibly lead to a similar breach as Facebook’s. He fundamentally disagreed with the premise that collecting more data leads to better products.)
Ultimately, it seems to be about trust for millennials. When people are willing to hand over their data to a company, it means there is some level of trust there that it will be safeguarded. As a Radware spokesperson puts it, “Despite how relaxed some are with their own information, most are wary of handing over data to untrusted brands and will take action if they feel that their data is at risk.” And when that trust is broken, it can often be for good. People trust their friends with their passwords. Make sure they trust you.