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More than half (55 percent) of all New Zealanders are more concerned with their individual privacy now than they were in the last few years, according to a public opinion survey released to coincide with Privacy Week. This is the latest biennial survey commissioned by the Privacy Commissioner and carried out by UMR Research.

The number of people concerned about their individual privacy has risen slightly to 67 percent, up two percent from the last survey held in 2016.

Those with a household income of $50,000 or less were more likely to be concerned about individual privacy (77 percent) compared to those with a higher household income (63 percent).

The survey also asked respondents how concerned they were about specific privacy issues.  New Zealanders were most concerned about children putting information about themselves on the internet (80 percent), followed closely by businesses sharing personal information with other businesses (79 percent).

The survey also asked respondents about drones and CCTV. Over 62 percent of respondents were concerned with the use of drones in residential areas. Just over a third (36 percent) was concerned about the use of CCTV by individuals, making it the issue with the lowest recorded level of concern in 2018.

Sixty-two percent of New Zealanders said they trust government organisations with their personal information, a drop of nine percent from when this was last measured in 2014. Trust in companies was significantly lower this year at 32 percent.

Respondents felt vulnerable when sharing personal information over social media. Thirty percent were comfortable doing so, compared to 65 percent who were uncomfortable. Only 18 percent were confident that their information would be looked after, while 75 percent had little or no confidence at all.

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner marks Privacy Week each year to promote privacy awareness. Along with the survey, this year includes a Privacy Forum at Te Papa Tongarewa on Wednesday 9 May; speaking events in Auckland, and the release of an animated video and infographic to promote everyday privacy, and more.

ENDS

For further information, contact Sam Williams on 021 959 050.

Notes for editors

  • Download a copy of the survey here
  • Results in this report are based upon questions asked in UMR Research’s nation-wide telephone omnibus survey and UMR Research’s nation-wide online omnibus survey.
  • The telephone survey is of a nationally representative sample of 600 New Zealanders 18 years of age and over and was conducted from 21st to the 27th of March 2018.
    • The margin of error for a 50% figure at the 95% confidence level for a sample of n=600 is approximately ±4.0%.
  • The online survey is of a nationally representative sample of 1000 New Zealanders 18 years of age and over and was conducted from 27th March to 16th April 2018.
    • The margin of error for a 50% figure at the 95% confidence level for a sample of n=1000 is approximately ±3.1%.
  • For more information about Privacy Week 2018 visit privacy.org.nz/privacy-week