Norton Cyber Safety Insights Report Reveals that COVID-19 Pandemic Drove
2 in 3 Indian Adults surveyed to Online Addiction
- On average, Indian adults surveyed spend more than 4 hours on their screen outside of work and education purposes
- Nearly half of Indian adults surveyed say they have decided against purchasing a smart home device due to security concerns
NortonLifeLock (NASDAQ: NLOK), a global leader in consumer Cyber Safety, has released a new global study examining consumers’ at-home online behaviours. The findings from the India segment of the research show that 2 in 3 Indians surveyed (66%) say they have become addicted to being online as a result of the pandemic.
In the study conducted online by The Harris Poll among more than 1,000 Indian adults, 8 in 10 (82%) said that the amount of time they spent on screens, aside from educational or work purposes, has increased significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic. On average, adults in India surveyed spent 4.4 hours a day in front of screens, outside of work or educational time, and for many, it’s too much. Smartphones by far are the most common device Indian adults surveyed feel they are spending too much time on (84%).
The majority of Indian adults surveyed (74%) agree that the amount of time they spend in front of a screen negatively impacts their physical health, while more than half (55%) say it negatively impacts their mental health. 76% say they are trying to limit their screen time by engaging in activities such as hiking or spending time with friends.
Indians surveyed show a lack of trust in smart home devices and/ or the companies that manufacture them. Around 2 in 5 or more Indian adults surveyed say they have decided against purchasing a smart home device due to security concerns (48%) or because of privacy concerns (40%). Similar proportions cite a lack of information about smart home devices (40%) and a lack of transparency from smart home device manufacturers about how they use consumer data (35%) as reasons for not purchasing a smart home device.
“It is understandable that the pandemic has increased our dependence on screens for activities that could otherwise have been done offline. It is important for every individual, however, to find a healthy balance between their on-screen and off-screen time so that their health and, more importantly, their children’s health is not adversely impacted,” said Ritesh Chopra, Director Sales and Field Marketing, India & SAARC Countries, NortonLifeLock. “Meanwhile, the online landscape has seen an increase in the numbers and types of cyber threats. Users must take great care of how and where they use their connected devices. Convenience should not come at the cost of security. Today, the loss of personal or confidential information can have very serious repercussions indeed. It is important for parents to be aware of this fact and to educate their children on the need for cyber safety.”
NortonLifeLock helps families stay safe online with products like Norton Family, which helps parents to monitor and manage their children’s online activities.
Additional India-specific findings from the 2021 Norton Cyber Safety Insights Report: Special Release – Home & Family:
- Convenience and utility seem to outweigh security concerns about smart home devices: While Indian adults surveyed generally describe smart home devices as helpful (57%) or convenient (49%), some find them to be a security risk (25%) and complicated (19%). A few even describe smart home devices as not trustworthy (16%), intrusive (15%), scary (12%), or creepy (10%).
Some of the risks associated with smart home devices may be due to consumer behaviours, as 22% of those surveyed who own a smart home device say they do not take any additional security measures to protect their smart home devices and rely solely on the security features built into the device.
- More than 4 in 5 adults surveyed admit to using personal information in their password(s): The majority of Indian adults (82%) have used personal information (such as their own name or birthday, or that of their spouse, or child) in their password(s). In fact, more than two-thirds (69%) admit to using a name and more than half (58%) to using a birthday.
On the other hand, of Indian adults who own a Wi-Fi router, 72% say they change their router password more than once a year, and 26% change the password monthly or more often. Just 9% admit they have never changed the password or are not sure how often the password is changed.
- Indians feel that conversations around online security should start young: The vast majority (84%) agree that it is more important now than ever before for parents to talk to their children about cyber safety. Still, irrespective of whether these conversations happen or not, 75% of parents concede that it is difficult for them to keep children safe when they are online. Further, 4 in 5 Indians (80%) believe that it is absolutely essential or very important for parents to teach their children about cyber safety.
These new findings serve as a second addendum to the 2021 Norton Cyber Safety Insights Report (NCSIR) examining the impact of cybercrime, in addition to the 2021 Norton Cyber Safety Insights Report: Special Release – Online Creeping uncovering consumers’ online creeping behaviours. Conducted in partnership with The Harris Poll, the 2021 Norton Cyber Safety Insights Report: Special Release – Home & Family surveyed more than 8,000 adults aged 18+ across eight countries1 including 1,004 Indian adults to assess consumers’ at-home online behaviors.
To view the study’s full results and accompanying visual assets, please visit the 2021 Norton Cyber Safety Insights Report: Special Release – Home & Family press kit at:https://www.nortonlifelock.