26 percent lie in site registration

A new survey found that 26 percent of Web surfers lie when registering at sites.

A new survey finds that 26 percent of the people lie when registering at Web sites. The reason: privacy concerns.

Corporate use and resale of demographic information has become a hot issue of late, so the Fifth WWW User Survey, conducted by the Georgia Institute of Technology (GIT), included questions about attitudes toward privacy in the most recent survey.

Among the findings: younger respondents are more likely to provide false registration information. Thirty-two percent of users aged 19-25 have provided false data, while only 13.6% of users over age 50 have done so. Also, females are more likely to have never registered at a Web site. The report concludes that marketing departments interpret demographic information conservatively.

The survey designed by the Graphics, Visualization and Usability Center at GIT found few surprises but did reveal some important trends.

Of 11,793 respondents worldwide, the survey noted a marked increase in the number of women using the Web. Overall, almost exactly one in three users are women (33 percent), compared to less than one in six in last year's survey (15.2 percent. Users continue to be overwhelmingly white (slightly more than 87 percent), with Asians making up the next largest group (3.4 percent). Although the respondents are not randomly chosen, the results are similar to those of other recent surveys.

Related stories:
Rules issued for online privacy
Children-targeted marketing under fire
Part 2:Privacy in the Digital Age
Focalink to help scope out audiences