Data breaches spook SA's online buyers

2016-02-18 13:52 - Duncan Alfreds, Fin24
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Card payment machine. (Duncan Alfreds, Fin24)

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Cape Town – The majority of South Africans are turned off by security breaches on online shopping websites, a survey has found.

According to research commissioned by security firm Kaspersky Lab, 71% of surveyed South Africans said they would avoid a provider that has experience a data breach.

Seventy-two percent of South Africans said that security was the first criterion when dealing with financial services or online stores.

“With more and more consumers not only using but relying on mobile banking and online payments to interact with companies and carry out transactions, there is an expectation that providers are taking adequate measures to safeguard their customers against fraud and breaches,” said Ross Hogan, Kaspersky Lab global head of Fraud Prevention.

An Ipsos survey commissioned by PayPal found that mobile e-commerce is set to grow by 70% as South African consumers adopt online platforms.

READ: eBay flaw a security risk to customers

Locals spent R28.8bn online in 2015 and that is expected to grow to R46bn by 2017.

Worries about the integrity of data practices also concern South Africans, said the survey which polled 11 000 people.

“The research also found that 74% of consumers in South Africa worry about the data security practices of companies they give their personal and financial information to – a rise of 12% on the previous year,” Kaspersky said.

Security has emerged as a key challenge to e-commerce, and Hogan argued that with efficient protection, consumers would be more eager to use online payment platforms.

“Our research also found that 66% of consumers would use online payments more often if they had reliable protection for financial transactions, making it clear that providers need to do more to safeguard transactional data for the long-term profitability and reputation of their business.”

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