79% of people support medical devices that immediately alert physicians

Despite growing concerns over data security, nearly 80 percent of people are in favor of medical devices that immediately alert physicians of significant changes in health.

However, consumers are more split on who should access other types of health-related data.

Seventy-nine percent of people globally support medical devices and sensors that immediately transmit significant health changes to their doctor, according to the 2018 Unisys Index U.S. report. On the opposite side of the spectrum, 48 percent of people globally don’t support police accessing their location data from wearable fitness monitors at their discretion, while 36 percent of people support it.

“Consumers largely support the use of connected devices globally, but data security has become a rising concern, forcing many to rethink the wisdom of sharing information among these devices,” the report said. “Access to personal device information that immediately benefits health and welfare has the highest level of support globally.”

Americans are largely in support of internet-connected devices for security reasons, with 83 percent of people in support of devices that provide security benefits, like smartphone features that send location data to police during emergencies. Seventy-five percent of Americans also support medical devices that send emergency alerts to doctors.

Globally, 38 percent of people support health insurance providers tracking their fitness activity through wearable monitors to determine premiums to reward good behavior–a jump from 33 percent in 2017.

Additionally, only 36 percent of people globally support police accessing their location data from wearable fitness monitors at their discretion; 48 percent of people don’t support it; and 16 percent were indifferent.

The Unisys Index report is a calculated score out of 300, measuring consumer attitudes about security in four categories: national, financial, internet and personal security. Researchers survey 1,000 adults in 13 different countries to calculate the score. The global security index is 173, while the U.S. security index is 163—down from last year’s score of 169.