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Snapshot of NZ's online behaviour

Sarah Putt, Contributor. 04 February 2020, 12:26 pm

InternetNZ has today released its third annual survey of online behaviour in New Zealand, providing a useful snapshot into how the internet is being used in daily life. The survey of 1001 people (803 consumers and 198 people who manage or own a business) was carried out by Colmar Brunton and has a margin of error of 3.1%. Here are some of the top findings.

Internet usage remains the same

"The way New Zealanders are accessing the Internet hasn't changed significantly in the last 12 months. We are still predominantly accessing the Internet from home (94%), although the frequency of accessing at work (65%) has increased slightly," the survey concludes.

The most popular social media channel is SMS (text), although most people probably wouldn't consider a social channel. But Facebook can claim the highest frequency of use. Six out of 10 people use Facebook on average 4.8 times a week, compared to 4.7 times a week for SMS.

The perceived benefits of being online are "accessing information and communicating with family and friends." The internet has a practical purpose too, with nearly half of consumers finding job online, and a third having found a house to buy or rent. 

Security and privacy

"New Zealanders are concerned about young children accessing inappropriate content, cyber bullying and the security of personal data. While the latter continues to be a key concern, overall concerns about security have decreased significantly - people are less concerned about the security of their personal data, identity theft and threats to privacy than they were in 2018," the survey notes.

This decrease in security concerns may be due to the fact that people are paying attention to cybersecurity advice, with over four out of five consumers using a pin or password on their devices and the incidence of two or multi-factor authentication increasing significantly from 2018.

Here's a graph that shows where people get their security advice from.

Security advice.png


Concerns about extremist material

Given the horrific events of March 15 last year, it's not surprising that "over half of New Zealanders are concerned that the Internet is a forum for extremist material and hate speech, and concerns that information is misleading or wrong have increased significantly since last year."

While only one-fifth of those who were surveyed are aware of the Christchurch Call. Of those, four out of five can accurately articulate an aspect of the content.

It seems tougher measures may be called for: "Nearly three-quarters of people think that NZ should implement legal consequences for social media companies who expose their users to harm. And nearly two-thirds disagree that social media companies are doing a good job of controlling extremist content," the survey notes.

You can check out the full survey here


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