Three quarters of Britons consider internet access a ‘human right’

Three quarters of Britons consider internet access a ‘human right’

There is overwhelming public support for the idea that access to the Internet should be a human right, according to new research

 

Three quarters of web users in Britain believe affordable access to the internet should be a basic human right, according to new research.

The study of 23,376 internet users in 24 countries, commissioned by the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI), revealed that a smaller proportion of Britons regard internet as a basic human right than the global average (83pc).

Source: CIGI-Ipsos global survey on internet security and trust

However, British respondents said the internet is important for their future in terms of accessing important information and scientific knowledge (90pc), personal enjoyment and recreation (91pc), social communication (77pc), free speech and political expression (79pc) and economic future and livelihood (76pc).

 

« Overwhelming global public support for the idea that access to the Internet should be a human right shows just how important the internet has come to freedom of expression, freedom of association, social communication, the generation of new knowledge, and economic opportunity and growth, » said Fen Hampson, director of CIGI’s Global Security & Politics Program.

“Right now, one third of the world’s population is online but two-thirds of the world’s population is not. Unless they are brought online, a world of Internet ‘have and have-nots’ will not only contribute to income inequality, but also stifle the world’s full potential for prosperity and innovation.”

The news comes after US President Barack Obama urged the communications regulator (FCC) to make equal internet access a basic right for all Americans earlier this month. The United Nations has also been calling for the internet to be considered a human right for over three years.

CIGI’s research also found that over half (53pc) of British internet users are more concerned about online privacy today than they were one year ago – on both a private and public level.

Source: CIGI-Ipsos global survey on internet security and trust

Less than half (47pc) said that government does a very good job of making sure the Internet is safe and secure, with only 28pc of those surveyed believing that private information on the internet is very secure.

Over two thirds are concerned about personal information being compromised, and three quarters are concerned about a criminal hacking into their personal bank accounts, while 70pc are concerned about someone hacking into their online accounts and stealing personal information.

Meanwhile, 70pc of Britons surveyed said they are concerned about institutions in their country being cyber-attacked by a foreign government or terrorist organisation, and around two-thirds are concerned about government agencies at home and abroad secretly monitoring their online activities.

« There is a gaping trust deficit in the Internet as people around the globe increasingly worry that their online identities and communications will be compromised or stolen by those who operate in the dark recesses of the Internet,” said Hampson.

« Unless trust is restored in the Internet through creative governance innovations its real potential to promote human development and global prosperity will be severely compromised. »

When given a choice of various governance sources for the Internet, the majority (57pc) of those surveyed globally chose a multi-stakeholder model “of technology companies, engineers, non-governmental organisations and institutions that represent the interests and will of ordinary citizens, and governments.”

Trust of multi-stakeholder governance of the internet in Britain was lower than the average (53pc), but it was still the most preferred ahead of options such as the United Nations. However, only 34pc of Britons said they would trust their own government to play an important role in running the internet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/

 

 

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