Mobile Payments: 71 Percent of Consumers Say "No Way" to Online Shopping, Banking via Mobile Devices

Less than ten percent of respondents to a Unisys survey say they've used a mobile device for online banking or commerce. One big problem: Smartphone users dont trust telecomm companies.

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Though mobile devices with data connections like smartphones and PDAs are becoming common, and there are more than 3.3 billion mobile phone users globally, consumers are still very hesitant to begin using such devices for online banking or shopping, according to research released in early June.

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In fact, 71 percent of the 13,296 consumers in 14 countries surveyed as part of the bi-annual Unisys Security Index said they will not even consider online banking or shopping via mobile device due to security concerns.

More specifically, 59 percent of survey participants do not trust their mobile devices to provide secure financial transactions, like bill payment or online commerce. Unisys queried consumers in Australia, Belgium, Brazil, France, Germany, Holland, Hong Kong, Italy, New Zealand, Malaysia, Singapore, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Telecommunications providers are in one of the least trusted industries in the entire business world, according to the Unisys consumer research, though retail banks, which would need to partner with telecomm companies to provide fully secure mobile finance services, are one of the leading industries from a consumer-trust standpoint.

Banks need to find ways to work in collaboration with telecomm vendors and retailers to capitalize on their innovation in the wireless space while educating users on the current state of mobile banking and transaction security, Unisys says.

"Despite unprecedented growth in the number of cell phone users and the advancement of mobile technologies, telecom providers, online retailers, and financial institutions seem unable to convince consumers worldwide that a secure platform exists for conducting online mobile transactions," says Tim Kelleher, Unisys vice president of enterprise security, in a release.

Additional survey findings include:

  • Less than 10 percent of respondents from all 14 countries currently employ mobile devices to perform money transfer, credit-card transactions or deposits.

  • France is the country that's most reluctant to use mobile devices for online banking on commerce (86 percent of consumers call themselves reluctant?), followed by the United Kingdom (79 percent), Austria (78 percent), Belgium, Italy (both with 77 percent) and the United States (71 percent).

  • Germans are currently using mobile banking or online commerce services more than consumers in any other country (21 percent), and the United Kingdom has the smallest number of consumers using mobile banking or shopping (one percent)

In March, Unisys contracted International Communications Research (ICR) to perform the survey in the United States, and Newspoll conducted the Asia-Pacific research.

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