November 23, 2010, 3:02 PM

Heading in the holidays, U.S. consumers worry about online security

A survey finds that fraud concerns have stopped 64% of consumers from making purchases.

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The security of online transactions continues to worry U.S. consumers, with 64% of them saying they have decided against making purchases from web sites because of fraud concerns, according to survey data from the National Cyber Security Alliance.

The trade group based its findings on online surveys of 3,498 consumers conducted between Oct. 1 and 5.  When asked why they failed to make online purchases, 51.4% of survey respondents said they had concerns about providing personal data while 48.4% said they felt that a web site requested more information than necessary for a transaction.

Still, consumers are hardly shunning the web, the survey suggests. 69.3% of respondents said they use the Internet to research products and prices, and 68% make online purchases. 62.4% of respondents make online payments and 38% buy items from online auction sites.

“Businesses should take note: Online customers are looking to make purchases where they see signs that a web site is secure and have a clear understanding of how information collected about them is going to be used,” says Michael Kaiser, the trade group’s executive director. “Online shoppers are being smarter and safer online, and that’s good for everyone.”

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