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Heartland Monitor: Americans Concerned About Privacy, Trust Law Enforcement

WASHINGTON, June 6, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Recent headlines focusing on government collection of telephone records within the United States may further stoke the underlying worries that the American public has about data privacy and electronic surveillance. New figures from the quarterly Allstate/National Journal Heartland Monitor Poll, which will be released in full on June 13, asked Americans their impression of the likelihood that their personal information is available to businesses, government, individuals and other groups without their consent.

A full 85 percent of Americans believe their communications history, like phone calls, emails and internet use, are accessible to businesses, the government and others.   

The poll - conducted days before the Verizon controversy erupted - also finds that just 48 percent of Americans have "some" or a "great deal" of trust in the government when it comes to the use of their personal data. Similarly, cell phone and internet service providers are trusted by just 48 percent of the public.

Americans are also divided on possible steps to improve national security, with just 10 percent supporting "expanded government monitoring of cell phone and email activities." Rather, the public is more likely to favor "increased use of camera surveillance of public places," with 44 percent supporting the measure, followed by "increased censorship of websites and less freedom to access sources on the Internet" (at 16 percent). However, a full 42 percent of respondents said they oppose all three options.

The full release of Heartland Monitor XVII will take place at the Newseum in Washington D.C. on Thursday June 13 at 8:30 a.m. Speakers and more information about the event entitled "All Eyes on Privacy: Transparency in the New Economy" can be found at:

Additional information on the polling series can be found at:

Key Findings

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