From the Equifax data breach to the Yahoo user account breach to Cambridge Analytica’s use of Facebook data, online privacy is top of mind for consumers. Among our Branded audience, 7 in 10 say they are concerned about cybersecurity and data breaches.  

Having private information shared with the world is one thing, but how do consumers feel about sharing their online information with those closest to them? We were curious how our community members feel about sharing their online information with their spouse. Do they think sharing passwords is a good idea? Have they ever spied on their spouse’s online accounts? Branded polled our audience to get their reactions.  

Our research found that 4 in 10 consumers say sharing passwords with their spouse is a good idea. Millennials (age 22-38) are more likely than older generations to look favorably on sharing passwords with a significant other. Interesting, the Silent Generation (age 70+) follows closely behind with 44 percent saying sharing passwords is a good idea.

Percent Indicating Sharing Passwords with Significant Other is Good Idea

Giving your significant other access to your accounts is one thing but spying is another. We were also curious how consumers feel about spying on their significant other’s online accounts. We asked our audience if they have ever spied on a spouse’s online accounts – ranging from online banking accounts to social media accounts.  

Overall, roughly 27 percent of consumers say they have spied on a significant other online. Millennials are more likely than older generations to say they have spied on a significant other’s online accounts. Roughly 35 percent of Millennials have spied on a spouse’s accounts compared to 27 percent of Gen X (age 39-50), 15 percent of Baby Boomers (age 51-69) and 4 percent of Silent Generation.

Percent Who Have Spied on Spouse’s Online Accounts

While both Millennials and Silent Generation consumers are likely to look favorably on sharing online passwords with their significant other, they diverge on spying. Millennials are social sharers and have a high comfort level with both sharing their information online and finding information about others online. On the other hand, Silent Generation consumers likely have limited personal information online that they would want to shield from a significant other.