Survey: Consumers Very Worried About Data Security in the Metaverse

(Image credit: Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay )

VANCOUVER, B.C.As more media companies rollout consumer experiences for sports and entertainment in the metaverse, a new survey from Telus International indicates that consumers have a lot of concerns about privacy and security in the medium, with the majority of respondents (60%) citing privacy and data security concerns as a reason for why they’d be uncomfortable completing various tasks in this emerging digital world.

“The metaverse provides an exciting and immersive way for consumers to interact with their favorite brands. Unfortunately, with the emergence and adoption of new technologies and platforms there are also opportunities for bad actors to deploy new and oftentimes more sophisticated forms of identity theft,” said Michael Ringman, chief information officer, Telus International. “Add to the fact that the metaverse is still in its nascency of being regulated, making it easier for fraudsters to impersonate an individual and carry out unauthorized activity without any real world implications. To safeguard their customers and brand reputation, companies must prioritize embedding robust trust and safety measures in the foundation of their metaverse strategy, while also ensuring that these measures are seamlessly integrated so they do not overly complicate the customer journey.”

As the metaverse continues to gain traction among brands and consumers alike, more than one-third (34%) of respondents said their top concern was that their personal data will be compromised. Additionally, 56% believe that it will be easier for hackers to steal their identity or data in this new digital space, the survey found. 

For companies seeking to address consumers’ metaverse concerns, a quarter (25%) of respondents indicated that robust and transparent privacy and security guidelines would encourage them to interact with brands in this space, the researchers said. 

In addition to having security measures in place, companies should post about them on their website or email customers directly so they are informed about the measures in place, as well as highlighting tactics for consumers to proactively decrease their exposure and vulnerability to bad actors.

“Ensuring proper data security in any online environment is complex and partnering with an experienced and proven trust and safety provider offers numerous benefits, including peace of mind,” said Ringman at Telus, which designs, builds and delivers end-to-end digital solutions to help global and disruptive brands enhance and protect the customer experience. “In addition to monitoring and addressing issues in real time, external providers can help anticipate new and emerging threats and have the expertise, agility, technology, processes and controls in place, including AI and human content reviewers, to detect suspicious activity,” 

The survey findings are based on a Pollfish survey that was conducted on Oct. 17, 2022, and included responses from 1,500 Americans familiar with the metaverse.

George Winslow

George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.