September 1, 2005, 12:00 AM

Why online shoppers want stronger authentication

Despite widespread fears of fraudulent activity and identity theft, consumers are willing to increase the amount of personal business they do online if their retailers offer strong authentication, says a new survey from RSA Security Inc.

Despite widespread fears of fraudulent activity and identity theft, consumers are willing to increase the amount of personal business they do online if their retailers, banks and other online service providers offer them strong authentication, says a new survey from RSA Security Inc.

50% of survey respondents also say that they would be more or much more likely to switch to a competitive service provider if that provider offered a strong authentication service.

The study asked 8,200 Internet users about their general perceptions of online security threats. 82.7% of all respondents felt threatened or extremely threatened by identity theft and 83.2% felt threatened or extremely threatened by online fraud. These fears extended at nearly identical levels across all types of online account holders, though web mail and portal users showed the highest percentage of extreme concern, the survey says. With regard to specific accounts, the survey indicates that respondents were most concerned about fraudulent access to their online bank accounts.

“Given these security concerns even among the most ardent and sophisticated of online consumers, delivering stronger forms of protection against online account fraud must be a top priority,” says Chris Young, vice president of consumer authentication services at RSA Security. “Whether it’s building a service that offers a single authentication method across multiple web accounts or providing a choice of easy-to-use devices that match a consumer’s lifestyle, businesses can no longer wait to educate and protect consumers online.”

 

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