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Published on November 10th, 2017 | by The GC Team

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Data security concerns lead to stockpiling of electronic devices

A new study has revealed that personal data security fears are preventing UK households from disposing of old, broken and unused electricals correctly.  

69% of people questioned in the study, which was conducted on behalf of REPIC, the UK’s largest WEEE producer compliance scheme, admitted to having concerns about their personal data being breached, and a third of these admitted they were more likely to keep hold of old electricals as a consequence.

The findings are understandable, and come as no surprise, as security breaches are becoming more prolific as the use of devices and connectivity grows. Yet, in spite of most having a good grasp on technology when it comes to using devices, 26% of those questioned in the REPIC survey didn’t know how to delete their personal data and, naively, a third didn’t think that they needed to.

The research also exposed a generation gap in attitudes towards data security. 76% of 16-29 year-olds were most worried about the security of their private information, while only 59% of people aged 60 and over voiced it as a concern.

Across the age groups, 30-44 year-olds were most likely to never or not always delete their personal data from electronic devices before disposal.

“Data can be deleted, devices cannot,” said REPIC CEO Mark Burrows-Smith (pictured). “These results are really telling in what drives people’s recycling behaviours and the need for increased education around how householders remove personal data before disposal.

“The Internet of Things means that connectivity is the norm, and with more and more people synching their personal data to electronic devices it is clear that there is a real risk that old or unused electricals are being stockpiled due to fear and mis-education.”

The survey of 1,107 people was conducted on behalf of REPIC in September 2017.

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Get Connected is the top trade journal for the UK electricals industry. Its website is the fastest, most interesting and up to date in the business.



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