Digital Literacy is a Bigger Problem Than Ever Despite Constant Threats to Private Information

Most U.S. adults who took Pew Research Center digital literacy survey got more than half of the questions wrong, including cybersecurity and privacy issues.

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Digital Literacy is a Bigger Problem Than Ever Despite Constant Threats to Private Information

We learned recently there are still a surprising number of people and companies in the AV integration world that are vulnerable to hacking, but we assume most of the people you meet every day in your business dealings in this industry would pass a digital literacy test with flying colors.

Maybe not, based on the results of a recent Pew Research Center survey, in which a majority of U.S. adults who responded to the June survey got more than half of the questions wrong.

On the plus side, more than two-thirds of respondents to the Pew digital literacy survey correctly said phishing scams can occur on social media, on websites, in emails and in text messages. [We have to assume some of the #AVTweeps without secure networks were part of the one-third who said no.]

More About Digital Literacy

The most jaw-dropping result in the Pew digital literacy survey focused on two-factor authentication. More than half of the respondents gave the wrong answer when asked to give an example of two-factor authentication, meaning they’re likely doing only the bare minimum—or perhaps even less—to protect their private information.

More than three-quarters of the digital literacy survey respondents weren’t sure when asked to identify a photo of Jack Dorsey, and despite my devotion to Twitter, I probably wouldn’t have been able to do so myself, despite this billionaire being the CEO of the company.

I also would have joined the almost half of the digital literacy survey respondents who didn’t know whether Facebook owns WhatsApp and Instagram. If we’re going for full disclosure here, I have no idea what WhatsApp is at all and didn’t want to look it up to compromise the validity of this sentence.

I’m not sure what that says about my digital literacy though.

There are lots of apps out there I don’t use and have never heard of and I’m always careful when asked to share photos or information that someone shouldn’t need—especially after a string of weird identity theft incidents in the past year.

It’s nice to see most of the digital literacy survey respondents understand the importance of advertising to social media platforms because it means they know the information they’re seeing probably wouldn’t be there without “a word from their sponsors.”

I’d be interested to hear the results of this digital literacy survey among those in the AV industry.

While the survey itself is complete, you can get a good idea about the questions and see if your digital literacy is better than those who took it a few months ago. If it’s not, maybe it’s time to go back to school.