Is your smartphone spying on you – yes, no, probably, who cares?

Image by Elgub | Bigstockphoto

If you believe your smartphone is listening in on your conversations and online activity, you are not alone – but you would be wrong. We hope.

You know that feeling when you are having a conversation about a summer holiday (you wish!) quite close to Alexa, and then you scroll through Facebook and, lo and behold, a variety of summer holiday suggestions comes up.

The truth is that you were probably using your smartphone to look at a few holiday ideas, having clicked ‘I agree’ without reading the terms and conditions (who does that, anyway).

A survey by Tidio shines a spotlight on the problem of people thinking that their smartphone is being spied on, somehow, and the results are definitely interesting and pretty disturbing.

The younger the smartphone user, the more they believe that their smartphone activity is being listened to. This belief starts with 71% of Gen Zs and runs to 35% of pre Baby Boomers.

29% of smartphone users believe that spooky marketers are spying on them, and 25% believe their Government is the culprit.

Also interesting is the addiction to, or reliance on, a smartphone. 23% of iOS users and 32% of Android users would not give up their phone even if they had (inadvertently) agreed to have their activities recorded.

The greatest levels of paranoia are to be found outside the US, with 47% of smartphone users in the Rest of the World believing that their phone was recording them (when they saw spookily timed adverts), and 19% thought that their chats were being recorded.

This survey is interesting in itself but is worrying for the bigger privacy picture.

There is a real struggle brewing about privacy, and high profile names are behind efforts to change the way the internet itself works. On the other side are the big tech companies desperate for you to be glued to your smartphone so they can sell adverts on the back of your addiction.

The fact that it is the youngest smartphone users who are most convinced that they are being spied on, but it is the same generation that would not stop using their phone means that the fight to reinstate privacy does not have the support of its greatest users and biggest influencers.

Related article:

Sabotaging data is a thing and another option in the privacy wars

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