Australians are far more trusting of their government's and corporations' handling of private data than their US and German counterparts, according to a Fujitsu study of 6000 people.
The study looked at attitudes towards cloud computing, data sharing by service providers and their governments' ability to effectively regulate it.
Australians, according to Fujitsu, are generally not very likely to trust their government in protecting personal data - and rank banks even lower.
But they are more trusting of these institutions than the Swiss, British, Germans and Americans.
The report followed a similar study Fujitsu released in October, which found that 68 percent of Australians believed the benefits of cloud computing for monitoring the elderly would outweigh the risks - at least 13 percent more than the UK, US, Germany and Japan.
Australians were also the most likely to support cloud computing for traffic management, biometric security and government services.
But while Australians had faith in cloud computing's potential, Fujitsu's study found that the Chinese would be the most accepting of a wholesale shift to cloud computing.
More than any other nation, the Chinese were found to be likely to trust their government to facilitate and regulate data sharing.
"Chinese consumers ... are around 25 percent more likely to trust their government than the average across all countries and are 20 percent more likely to believe that the government should play a role in facilitating data sharing – something consumers in many other countries were wary of," the study reported.
Chinese apparently would also trust their nation's corporations to manage their data, while Australians, along with their US, UK, Indian and Singaporean counterparts, wanted to protect their own data, it said.
But while the study found Australians desired independence and hoped companies were transparent about how they managed their data, they still wanted the government to play an active role in regulating privacy.
Fujitsu's study characterised Australians (along with the Japanese and Swiss) as consumers that "will demand government intervention but never be satisfied by it."
And while the US was the first nation to implement data breach fines and are now considering a "Do Not Track" register, Americans were the least likely to want the government to penalise companies that misuse data, the study found.
Copyright © iTnews.com.au . All rights reserved.
Issue: 315 | May 2013
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