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GCTR15_HOMEPAGE-BANNER-320x192MEF today launched its third annual Global Consumer Trust Report in association with AVG Technologies. Analysing data from 15,000 mobile media users in 15 countries across five continents, it provides detailed insight into consumers’ behaviours and attitudes relating to mobile privacy and security – and analyses their impact on the global mobile apps and services market.

Here are just a few of the standout points taken from the report and an overview of what the findings mean for the mobile ecosystem globally. MEF members can download the entire report free of charge, and non-members can download the exec summary now. Find out more here.

speech markBuilding consumer trust is an integrated process. While the mobile industry across the board must step up and take responsibility for increasing transparency across user privacy policies, it is equally important that consumers take their own steps to educate and protect themselves in order to better protect their rights and understand their choices online. 

Judith Bitterli, Chief Marketing Officer AVG Technologies


Smart mobile devices make daily life easier, cheaper and more convenient. But they also pose challenges to consumers, businesses and regulators. Some of the personal information they collect – a user’s location or contacts now, maybe their bank or healthcare details in the future – is sensitive and prone to theft or abuse.

There is nothing wrong with monetising data – it often provides consumers with services they love for free or at a discount. However, there is a balance to be found between privacy and commerce. Industry and regulators must work together to ensure consumers are protected, but also that businesses are free to innovate and provide valuable new services.


For that to happen, all sides must understand the consumer’s point of view. That’s where this report comes in. And the message is clear: the mobile industry must respect consumers’ privacy and secure their data against theft and misuse. Only then can we be sure that the explosive global success of mobile apps and services will thrive long into the future.

Key Highlights
  • A lack of trust is the single most influential factor preventing more downloads and purchases via mobile. 34% named it as such as compared to 30% the previous year.
  • China reported the highest trust concerns at 41% and the US saw the largest increase in a lack of trust, up nine points year-on-year to 35%.
  • 49% of consumers surveyed say a lack of trust limits the amount of apps they download or use compared to 37% in the previous year
  • 36% say it puts them off the idea of mobile wallets, far outweighing other criteria such as not knowing about them or seeing no incentive.
  • 72% of mobile media users are uncomfortable sharing personal data such as location or contact details with apps.
  • Only 13% are always happy to share personal information vs 21% last year.
  • 63% consider transparency important or extremely important compared to 49% last year. In South Africa it is (80%).
  • Downloading a privacy protection app was the most popular way to protect personal information (31%).
  • Consumers have a better understanding of the risks of malicious software and apps on their phone. (23%). Last year, 35% hadn’t heard of malware.
  • 40% name security and privacy as an important factor when purchasing a mobile device and in Germany this rises to 52%.
  • A third (34%) of mobile media users globally now rely on dedicated security apps to protect them. This helps explain the fall in the number of consumers who say malware will make them more cautious in the apps market (74 – 48%).
  • Almost half (42%) of all consumers use a pin code to bar access to apps and information.
  • 64% use software or apps to guard passwords and protect against malware. Only one in ten (11%) take no steps to protect their device.
  • A third of consumers around the world (34%) want the mobile industry to continue to develop apps which protect security and privacy.
  • There is also a clear call for app stores and device manufacturers to do more to protect personal and financial info (30%).Apps

MEF members can download the entire report free of charge. Find out more here.