Less than a third of consumers worldwide feel very secure when shopping online, yet more than half are doing so more frequently than pre-pandemic, ESET reveals

ESET reveals that only 29% of consumers worldwide feel very secure when shopping online, yet 61% of all consumers are shopping online more often than they were before the COVID-19 pandemic. ESET has explored the topic of online shopping and banking in the consumer segment of its global financial technology (FinTech) research, surveying 10,000 consumers across the UK, US, Australia, Japan and Brazil.

Consumers were asked for their views and experiences of online shopping and banking, and the responses reveal the extent to which internet retailing has surged during the pandemic. Sixty-one percent of consumers globally stated that they are shopping online more often than before the pandemic, rising to 70% among those in the 25–34 age group. The research also shows that increased online shopping is here to stay, even after the pandemic is over; 40% of consumers expect to be shopping online more post-pandemic than they are currently.

On the other hand, consumers are not as confident in their security when shopping online, with just 29% stating that they feel “very secure” when doing so, and 16% saying they feel either “not particularly secure” or “not at all secure.” However, 69% of consumers globally felt they would be able to spot a phishing email imitating one of the online shops they use regularly. This could indicate a higher awareness of phishing emails amongst the general public due to prevalence in the media.

These results demonstrate that more needs to be done to protect and instill confidence in consumers regarding threats encountered when shopping online, especially as ESET’s data indicates that internet retailing is set to continue to boom post-pandemic.

On the topic of internet banking, confidence is much higher. Eighty-three percent of global respondents reported that they manage their bank accounts online, with 24% of these doing so exclusively through a mobile app. Thirty-nine percent of people said that they feel very secure when online banking, suggesting a global trend that banks are ahead of retailers when it comes to security and consumer confidence.

Commenting on the results, Ignacio Sbampato, Chief Business Officer at ESET, said, “The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly limited our ability to visit shops in person, so it is no surprise that our research shows a surge in popularity for online shopping. What is surprising, though, is that the research indicates that we can expect this growth to continue, even after the pandemic.”

“With this in mind, it is worrying that less than a third of consumers feel very safe when shopping online. Without increasing consumer awareness of security measures available for internet shopping, people will continue to put payment details at risk. So, it is essential for both retailers and consumers that this data is kept secure from cyber-threats during transactions. Protecting consumers and their data from phishers and other malicious actors is vital, and it is our mission to do so using our cutting-edge security software technology.”

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