Facebook Scandal Erodes Trust in Social Media Companies
It’s been nearly six months since the scandal surrounding Facebook, Cambridge Analytica and the unlawful harvesting of user data started unfolding, and the world’s largest social media company is still dealing with the fallout. After suffering the biggest single-day market cap loss of any U.S. company in late July, the company’s share price has yet to recover. Perhaps more importantly however, Facebook needs to find a way to regain the trust of the public. After all, if people are no longer willing to share information on Facebook, the company’s entire business model is broken.
According to a recent survey conducted by Hub Entertainment Research, 49 percent of U.S. consumers are not very or not at all confident that Facebook will keep their data secure. As the following chart illustrates, the Cambridge Analytica scandal appears to have eroded trust in social media companies in general as well. Compared to other companies and institutions, social media firms trail significantly in terms of the level of confidence that the U.S. public has in their ability to keep their information safe.
Interestingly, the majority of respondents (55 percent) still use Facebook the same way they did before the data scandal. 23 percent post less, 20 percent changed their privacy settings and just 8 percent deleted their account in response to what happened.
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