More Connected than ever before: How we build our digital comfort zones
By: Alexandra Jane G. Bibal
A security software company have released a survey which identifies the importance of internet safety and security and how attitudes have changed as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. The survey determined that people are spending at least 2 more hours per day online .The report suggests that people should have a digital comfort zone when using technology at home. This is a result of self-isolation and the increased use of the internet to enable us to work and learn from home.
Key findings showed that:
· 36% of millennials are aware they should increase their privacy.
· 33% parents are more lenient about how much time children spend online.
· 52% of families trust their children when it comes to online safety.
· 42% of the survey respondents consider safety and security to be important for feeling comfortable when using the internet.
The said findings were possible through a research study involving over 10,000 participants with the help of a research agency operating in the following countries like Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, DACH, France, Italy, Mexico, Peru, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Thailand, Turkey, the UAE, the UK and the US.
Lockdown measures have put the home firmly at the heart of our technology use, with increasing lines between work, school, and home life. This report will paint a picture for us to understand how this year has changed our habits online, and how much more connected we are, and what the ‘new normal’ is.
The research may seem surprising, but the senior generations have seen the biggest uptick in the amount of time they are spending online, because they were online less to begin with, and now need to stay in touch with family and arrange meetings via video conferencing, instead of in person. Physical activities like visiting local bank branches, or participating in charitable, social or cultural activities like visiting a museum are now moving online, causing this demographic to rely mainly on digital alternatives. For example, instead of going out with friends to eat a delicious food.
Increasingly, personal devices are being used for traditionally face-to-face activities. The events of this year have accelerated this trend. Half of us (52%) are now socializing online rather than in-person, and a quarter of us (26%) are now using online tutorials rather than physically attending clubs, courses, or classes. The same applies to our working lives, too. 32% of respondents say that they now use video-conferencing to attend meetings virtually, instead of going and attending them physically.
Without a doubt, the most common devices that can be found at home are mobile phones and computers (either desktop or laptop)
Everyone will have a unique sense of what their digital comfort zones are, but through the learnings of the research we can draw some broad conclusions about how it looks for many of us. It is more connected – meaning technology at home will increasingly become more of a social activity, instead of a solitary activity that it has been traditionally. Most respondents also said that their digital comfort zone means feeling safe and secure online, and as our homes become more of our technological base, this technological safe space will be more important than ever going forward.
How to protect your digital comfort zone:
ü Take your online privacy seriously and don’t share or allow third-party access to your information unless absolutely necessary, to reduce the risk of it falling into the wrong hands.
ü Install the most recent patches and product updates to keep your services and applications up to date. This keeps your device safe from the most recent threats.
ü Always check the permission settings on the apps you use to reduce the possibility of your data being shared or stored without your knowledge by third parties – and beyond. You may end up giving consent by default, so it’s always a good idea to double-check before using an app or service.