Most Americans don’t know Facebook owns Instagram and WhatsApp (FB)

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A majority of U.S. adults performed poorly on a digital knowledge quiz carried out by Pew Research, answering fewer than half of questions correctly.
Most respondents didn’t know that Facebook owns Instagram, for example, or that “https://” indicates that information entered on a website is encrypted.
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A new Pew Research Center survey finds that Americans’ understanding of technology-related issues varies greatly depending on the topic, term or concept. While a majority of U.S. adults can correctly answer questions about phishing scams or website cookies, other items are more challenging. For example, just 28% of adults can identify an example of two-factor authentication – one of the most important ways experts say people can protect their personal information on sensitive accounts. Additionally, about one-quarter of Americans (24%) know that private browsing only hides browser history from other users of that computer, while roughly half (49%) say they are unsure what private browsing does.

This survey consisted of 10 questions designed to test Americans’ knowledge of a range of digital topics, such as cybersecurity or the business side of social media companies. The median number of correct answers was four. Only 20% of adults answered seven or more questions correctly, and just 2% got all 10 questions correct.

As was true in a previous Center survey, Americans’ knowledge of digital topics varies substantially by educational attainment as well as by age. Adults with a bachelor’s or advanced degree and those under the age of 50 tend to score higher on these questions. These are some of the key findings from a Pew Research Center survey of 4,272 adults living in the United States conducted June 3-17, 2019.

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Americans’ understanding of these topics varies drastically across the 10 questions presented in the Center’s survey. To begin with, only three questions were answered correctly by a majority of adults. About two-thirds of U.S. adults (67%) know that phishing scams can occur across multiple platforms, including email, text messages, social media or websites. Some 63% of Americans understand that cookies are text files that allow websites to track users’ site visits and activities.

Similarly, 59% know that advertising is the largest source of revenue for most social media sites, rather than things such as exclusive licensing deals (4%) or corporate consulting (2%).

Additionally, 48% of adults correctly answered that a privacy policy is a contract between websites and users regarding how their data will be used, while 45% know that net neutrality refers to the principle that internet service providers should treat all traffic on their networks equally.

Other concepts in the survey are far less familiar to the public. Only three-in-ten adults correctly answered that starting a URL with “https://” means that the information entered on that site is encrypted (30%). A similar share (28%) accurately identified an example of two-factor authentication. (This involves confirming individuals are who they claim to be in at least two of the …read more

Source:: Businessinsider – Tech


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