Survey: US Shoppers Will Trade Privacy (but Not Convenience) for Better Fraud Protection

As more consumer spending shifts to e-commerce, merchants need to strike a balance between fraud protection and customer experience. A recent survey conducted just before business closures swept the US found 56% of US online shoppers viewed fraud protection as more important than privacy. However, they still prize convenience and want an easy, quick shopping experience.

The March 2020 survey ClearSale commissioned was conducted by Sapio Research and included over a thousand consumers who shop online at least every few months. Among the key findings are that the majority of U.S. online shoppers are concerned about security and fraud.

  • 92% said security is important to them when they shop online.
  • 81% said they suspect online fraud is common.
  • 83% said they’d be more likely to shop on sites that discussed their fraud-prevention efforts.
  • 58% didn’t think retailers were “overly cautious” about online fraud.

These consumers also indicated that they take some measures to safeguard their account data while they shop, but they put the burden of prevention on retailers.

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Most online shoppers are mindful of security measures
Overall, most of the consumers who participated in the survey said they followed some basic shopping security practices. Eighty-seven percent said they check to make sure websites are legitimate before they make a purchase, and 85% said they’d rather wait longer for delivery or pay more for an order than buy from a shop they don’t recognize and 82% said they never enter their personal data on an unverified website.

These safety steps can protect consumers from phishing and data theft. However, other data security steps weren’t as popular. For example, only 39% said they prefer to always use PayPal or another digital wallet when they pay, instead of entering their credit card data. And just slightly more than half (54%) said they check the store’s URL before they shop.

Concerns about data security trouble some consumers
The study found most consumers felt online shopping was just as safe or safer than shopping in physical stores. Just 13% thought online shopping was “somewhat” or “a lot” less safe than brick-and-mortar retail.

Among that group, the chief concerns were:

  • Not knowing where their personal details are stored and who can see them.
  • Not knowing if the website has adequate data protection and fraud prevention tools.
  • Not knowing who would be accountable if there was a problem.

Consumers have different ideas of who’s responsible for fraud prevention
Who’s accountable for online fraud prevention? A third said it’s up to each website to protect customers, while 27% said it’s up to individual shoppers. Nearly a quarter (23%) said banks and payment processors bear responsibility, and the rest laid the problem at the feet of the government or fraud regulators…  Retail Customer Experience