A recent survey conducted by OnePoll on behalf of security and privacy advice and comparison website Comparitech.com has found that 67% of the UK public who regularly use the Windows operating system would at least consider switching from Windows to Mac due to privacy concerns, with 15% insisting they would definitely consider swapping. Interestingly, 33% said they would not even consider switching operating systems, despite Windows 10 collecting user data that would raise concern over privacy.
The poll results come in light of allegations from the French National Data Protection Commission that Windows 10 collects user information on an excessive scale and ordering Microsoft to remedy three privacy failings; specifically:
- The Windows Store collects data on the apps users download and time spent on each one without permission
- Windows 10 installs an advertising identifier by default, which allows Microsoft to monitor browsing and target users with ads
- The Windows Store authentication, which allows users to set a 4-digit PIN in lieu of a password, does not restrict the number of attempts to enter the correct code.
“These issues are things that have set off alarm bells within the security community on release of Windows 10 a year ago. Now, with France taking the next step in ordering Microsoft to fix them, it’s a small win for privacy and the wider public who have expressed concerns,” said Paul Bischoff, privacy advocate for Comparitech.com. “Companies tend to take these issues seriously when people start voting with their wallets, so hopefully the results from this survey should serve as a wake-up call that consumers are becoming more privacy conscious.”
For more information on the survey results and to see how the UK stacks up against the US, please see Paul’s latest blog on the Comparitech.com website: https://www.comparitech.com/blog/vpn-privacy/windows-users-might-switch-to-mac-over-windows-10-privacy-issues/