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Most Millenials Don’t Seem to Care About Data Breaches

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg arrives to testify before a House Energy and Commerce hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, April 11, 2018, about the use of Facebook data. (c) 2018 AP Images

Click the play button above to learn why millennials aren’t worried about data breaches

Audio Transcript: Millennials and Data Breaches

By Jack Price SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) – 

Millennials spend the most time of any age group online, spending an average of almost three-thousand minutes online each month.

However, most millennials – those same ones who live and breathe online – don’t seem to care much about something compromising the safety of the internet: data breaches. And it could cost them more than they realize.

In early April, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified at a House Energy and Commerce hearing on Capital Hill. He apologized for the recent data breach hitting Facebook, exposing millions of people’s data to the public.

You’d think a testimony like this would get the attention of millennials. In fact, according to a recent Gallup poll, millennials are generally more aware of potential data security risks than other generations, but are less likely to be concerned about them.

“I feel like most millennials are not generally aware of what’s going on, mostly because I feel like not a lot of them are really paying attention to the news and haven’t realized the consistency and how many companies are actually having trouble with data breaches,” Avid Facebook user and college student Erik Marberger said.

Theo Asher is the editor of the Colgate University Maroon-News. He confirms that fewer millennials are reading or watching the news, and knows where to place the blame.

“It’s almost ironic how they’ve become so wrapped up in their individual technologies and their kind of maintenance of their individual social health in a way,” Asher said.  The kind of addiction to Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat; even though they kind of should be news dispensing agencies almost kind of play into the narcissism of millennials these days.”

But it’s not like millennials are completely unaware of the danger of data breaches. Joseph Sisti is a graduate student majoring in Information Management. Data security is a big part of his curriculum – and he wishes more of his fellow students were learning about the importance of doing a better job of hiding their personal information.

“You get into things like identity theft, and all that and then if you look at Facebook, you know it’s also really bad because, they’re using it in a malicious way, and it’s not as secure as people are intended to believe.”

But if having your information vulnerable is so bad, why aren’t more millennials freaking out? As a frequent Facebook user, you’d think Stanford student Cameron Nosrat might be just a little concerned about the websites’ recent data breach. But Nosrat claims millenials just don’t have time to care about them.

“You know, as a college student, just with everything that’s going on with my life and all of the responsibilities I have, whether that be school, extracurriculars, research, I just don’t really pay attention with what’s going on in the news with the data breaches,” says Nosrat. “I know that, maybe in the future this could be a problem for me but for now this is something that I’m not really thinking about much.”

So many millennials just don’t seem to be that concerned about the data breaches. It may be they don’t watch the news enough – or they just don’t realize how damaging the release of their information to other people could be.