A joint poll by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Division of Banks and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS) has yielded some interesting results.
Recall that in April, CSBS teamed with the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) to issue guidance on virtual currency. It later formed an Emerging Payments Task Force in an effort to create a Bitcoin rule book.
51% of respondents said they have heard of “Bitcoin or another virtual currency” (would this include World of Warcraft gold?). Men (64%) were more likely than women (38%) to be aware of it. Whites (54%) and Hispanics (51%) were more likely than African Americans (37%). Those coming from higher income households or holding post-secondary education were also more likely.
However, when it comes to actual usage, 65% said they were unlikely to use it. 18% are likely, with 17% unsure. However, 43% of those aged 18-24 were likely to use it.
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Although whites were the most aware of Bitcoin, they are the least likely to use it. Only 14% said they would purchase bitcoins, compared to 30% of Hispanics and 24% of African Americans.
The biggest concern among respondents was “whether or not Bitcoins are secure.” 25% said they would never use bitcoins. 14% said they do not understand the purpose of virtual currency.
The survey was conducted during May 22-25 and published in late August. 1014 adults aged 18 or older were surveyed, with a probability sample error of 3.2%.
As Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies have become more prevalent, particularly over the last 12 months, authorities and media have taken a step back to examine consumer sentiment. Recently, Bloomberg conducted a poll to which 55% of respondents felt that Bitcoin is in a bubble.