It’s been more than a year since the world was shaken up by the revelations about the degree of online surveillance carried out by the NSA. Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden had leaked classified documents that revealed the extent to which the agency monitored online activity around the world. But did last year’s events actually have an effect on the way people behave online? According to an extensive study published by the Centre for International Governance Innovation, the effects weren’t as big as one could have expected.
Just 60 percent of the 23,000+ internet users surveyed for the report have even heard of Edward Snowden and merely 39 percent of those who are aware of Snowden’s actions have subsequently changed their online behavior. However, 64 percent of all respondents admitted to being more concerned about online privacy compared to a year ago and 62 percent stated their concern about foreign government agencies spying on their online activities. The survey participants saw the biggest threat to online privacy coming from criminal hackers: 4 in 5 respondents expressed their fear of criminals accessing their bank accounts or personal photos / messages.
This chart shows if and how internet users around the world have changed their behavior following last year’s revelations by Edward Snowden regarding online surveillance activities of the U.S. government.
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