You can trust us on this, but you probably won't

December 1, 2013 12:15 AM

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Nearly two-thirds say you can't be too careful in dealing with people, according to the General Social Survey, a massive survey of Americans conducted regularly since 1972 with funding from the National Science Foundation.

To find out more, an Associated Press-GfK poll asked Americans how much they trust others in everyday situations.

—78 percent have little faith in people they meet while traveling, saying they trust them "just somewhat," "not too much" or "not at all."

—19 percent don't worry — they feel "quite a bit" or "a great deal" of trust in people away from home.

—75 percent mistrust people driving cars while they're driving, biking or walking.

—67 percent have little confidence in people who swipe their credit or debit card when they buy something.

Liberals are more laid back at the checkout than either conservatives or moderates.

—59 percent don't have much faith in people with whom they have shared photos, videos or information on social media.

—55 percent don't much trust the people they hire to come into their homes to do work.

Gun owners worry less about inviting workers into their homes than other Americans do.

—50 percent have little trust in the people who prepare their food when they eat out.

Wealthy Americans, with household incomes over $100,000, are less likely than most to fret about the restaurants where they dine.

—46 percent have little confidence in people at the doctor's office or hospital who have access to their medical records.

—But more — 50 percent — don't sweat it. Doctors and their staffs were the most trusted group in the poll.

People who oppose President Barack Obama's health care law worry more about privacy at the doctor's office than the law's supporters do.

The AP-GfK Poll was conducted Oct. 3-7, 2013, using KnowledgePanel, GfK's probability-based online panel. It involved online interviews with 1,227 adults. The survey has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points for all respondents.

The survey was conducted using KnowledgePanel, a probability-based Internet panel designed to be representative of the U.S. population. Respondents to the survey were first selected randomly using phone or mail survey methods, and were later interviewed for this survey online. People selected for KnowledgePanel who didn't otherwise have access to the Internet were provided with the ability to access the Internet at no cost to them.


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