Rating and ranking websites such as TripAdvisor are trusted more by the Maltese than any other EU citizens, a new survey has found.

A report published by the European Commission last week found that 65 per cent of Maltese trusted these websites and said they would follow their advice, some 15 per cent more than the EU average.

The EU-wide survey, conducted last April, found that rating websites were also the least distrusted by Maltese. They were not, however, the most used with 35 per cent saying they had used one of these websites to inform a purchasing decision before. More than one in 10 Maltese purchased at least one thing online every day, around five per cent more than the EU average.

Meanwhile, Maltese were also the most likely to use social media on a daily basis, with 55 per cent using Facebook or Twitter every day. On average, only 37 per cent of Europeans used social media to share something about themselves or their experiences every day, with 60 per cent doing this at least once a week.

65 per cent of Maltese trusted these websites and said they would follow their advice

Nearly three-quarters of Maltese, on the other hand, used social media once a week, second only to Portugal, where four out of every five used social media once a week.

And, it would appear social media platforms were gaining local popularity, with only a fifth of Maltese saying they never used them – down five per cent since 2013.

Many Maltese had reservations over social media, with some 54 saying they were concerned about their personal information being collected by the networks, more or less the EU average. In fact, more than half of Maltese said they would like to see a new authority set up to regulate social media and online platforms.

The survey also looked at Maltese internet users’ views on search engines. More than two- thirds of Maltese used search engines to run searches online, with the rest either saying they searched for almost nothing, and only visited a handful of sites directly. Only Sweden and the UK used search engines more than Maltese.

Again, however, Maltese were concerned with information being stored and used by search engines.

In fact only 34 per cent said they felt comfortable with search engines such as Google storing information about their online activity.

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