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Most Americans think big tech should be regulated like big banks

They’re less certain that the government would be able to pull it off.

A workman holds a sledge hammer over a cardboard cutout of Mark Zuckerberg The Washington Post/Getty Images
Rani Molla is a senior correspondent at Vox and has been focusing her reporting on the future of work. She has covered business and technology for more than a decade — often in charts — including at Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal.

Some 53 percent of Americans believe big tech companies should be regulated by the federal government, much like big banks are, according to a new survey from market research firm HarrisX.

They were less certain that the government would be capable of doing so.

Only 31 percent said the federal government could regulate large tech companies while 38 percent thought it couldn’t.

During Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony before Congress earlier this month, it became clear that lawmakers may try to further regulate the social media giant. The Facebook CEO was in D.C. thanks to the Cambridge Analytica data scandal in March, in which an outside firm was able to acquire information about 87 million people without their permission.

From this survey, it seems the country agrees.

Indeed, public sentiment for tech regulation was significantly higher than it was last fall, according to HarrisX.

Older Americans were even more likely to say tech companies should be regulated like banks while millennials were less likely:

Altogether 62 percent of Americans think the government will take steps to regulate the tech sector within the next few years.

The survey was conducted online among 2,546 U.S. adults April 12-13, following Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony.

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