Email Privacy Survey: Users Find New Gmail Policy Controversial

Gmail recently changed one of its privacy policies. It will now allow Google+ users to send emails to other users without actually having their email addresses. This has drawn some criticism from privacy advocates. But what do actual users think? And how many people would be affected?

email privacy

Email Privacy

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 56% of respondents said that they currently use Gmail as their primary email provider. 41% said they use another email service. And 4% said they don’t really use email at all.

40% of email users said that they often receive emails from people or companies that they didn’t explicitly give their email addresses to. 44% said they sometimes receive such emails. 12% said they rarely receive these types of emails. And just 4% said they never receive emails from people or companies they didn’t explicitly give their contact information to.

Google Users

The latest Google privacy issue only affects those Gmail users who also have a presence on Google+. However, more than half of respondents have at least signed up for an account. 18% said they use Google+ fairly often. 46% said they have an account, but don’t really use Google+. And 37% have not signed up for an account at all. Gmail users were even more likely to have an account. 23% of them said they use Google+ often, and 50% said they have an account.

Gmail Policy

And as far as the new policy is concerned, 61% of respondents felt that allowing people to email them from Google+ or a similar site would be a violation of privacy. Just 11% said they think it would be a useful feature. 19% think it would be okay of Google+ or other social media sites allowed just the people in your circles or network to send emails. And 10% said they didn’t care. Gmail users were 6% less likely to see the new policy as a violation of privacy.

You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.

Photo Credit: Email with Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook from Flickr

What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on January 12 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Anne Pilon
Anne Pilon brings 3 years experience to AYTM as a blogger and journalist. She has a degree in journalism and marketing communications from Columbia College in Chicago and enjoys writing about business, marketing, social media, and art.