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More than a quarter self-censor online after Snowden leaks

A survey recently appeared online from CIGI-Ipsos, that looked at how people felt about different aspects of online life. Part of it quizzed them on the aftermath of Edward Snowden’s NSA leaks, with over 60 per cent saying they were aware of him and almost 40 per cent saying they had taken action to tighten up their personal privacy since. One of the saddest bits of news however is that an average of 28 per cent of those asked said that they had begun to self-censor what they said online to avoid being targeted by international intelligence agencies.

This survey undertaken by CIGI-Ipsos quizzed over 23,000 internet users around the world, between the ages of 16 and 64 and polled results by category and global region. It discovered that some 58 per cent of those living in Latin America now no longer visit certain sites since Edward Snowden’s revelations. 42 per cent of Europeans did the same, while over a third of those quizzed (from every region) said they now changed their password regularly to help protect their security.

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A lot of this is down to fear of government censorship and surveillance, with over 62 per cent saying they were concerned about being monitored online. Hacking was more of a worry, with 77 per cent of those asked saying they were concerned about someone stealing personal information on them and hacking into their accounts.

This has led to 28 per cent of those asked claiming to censor what they say online. This could be to do with the way people have been attacked for things they said out of context, including those that have been arrested for making jokes on social networks.

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KitGuru Says: Self-censoring because you want to be a nicer person is one thing. Censoring because you’re afraid someone might consider you a terrorist due tosomething you said being picked up by an NSA algorithm, is another thing entirely. 

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