Microsoft asks: What’s your online privacy type?

April 22, 2013

What’s your privacy type? That’s the question Microsoft is asking with a new consumer campaign that’s focused on measuring consumer attitudes toward online privacy.

As part of its new initiative, the tech giant has put out a quiz asking people to assess their attitudes about online privacy. The spectrum goes from the unconcerned “Casual Surfer” to those who say “Privacy Please.”

Mary Snapp, Corporate Vice President & Deputy General Counsel at Microsoft, said that the quiz is supposed to get people talking about their attitudes toward online privacy.

“It assesses how much you are interested in managing access to your information online,” she said in an interview with The Washington Post. “It enables you to talk about privacy choices with your friends and family.”

Snapp said Microsoft is interested in getting feedback from consumers about their privacy choices, having heard from them that it’s a subject of growing concern as they put more data online.

But while Microsoft has heard that its users are very concerned about privacy, they’re less sure about how to address those worries.

Microsoft launched the quiz as part of a larger Web site dedicated to “Your Privacy” on Monday. The campaign is first focusing on the Washington, D.C. area — which included an ad in Monday’s print edition of The Washington Post — but will roll out across the country in the coming weeks.

The campaign is also sprinkled with reminders about how Microsoft can help users protect their privacy, of course, but also provides guides to let users know how to use the settings on some of its most-used products such as Windows, Office, Skype and the XBox.

The quiz itself, Snapp said, will not be collecting personally identifiable information from those who take it — it doesn’t require your name or ask you to sign-in — though Microsoft is looking at the results to gauge how consumers look at the issue of privacy.

Related stories:

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Facebook teams up with attorneys general on safety campaign

Instagram beauty contests worry parents, child privacy advocates

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Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.
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