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Most shoppers skeptical about data protection by retailers


Los Angeles -- American shoppers feel they can’t trust retailers to protect their credit card and personal information either online or in brick-and-mortar stores. According to a survey by Bizrate Insights, 62% of shoppers agreed that "Current security to protect credit card and personal information at a retailers’ brick-and-mortar stores isn’t strong enough.”

This was only marginally worse than concerns for security on websites (60% agree) but better that mobile transactions (65% agree).

Bizrate Insights, a division of Connexity (formerly Shopzilla), also found that "News reports of information being stolen from retailers" was the top reason for consumer concerns on security (cited by 43% of respondents). Some 17% said their own information had been stolen and 12% said "I don’t believe that the store will take good care of me if there is a problem." These concerns have a direct impact on sales. Because of the data thefts, 29% agreed that "I find myself reluctant to make retail brick-and-mortar purchases." That figure jumped to 34% for online purchases.

While there is little differentiation in data security concerns by channel, there is some differentiation by generation. Overall, Generation Y is substantially less inclined to agree that data security is not strong enough (45%-51% vs. 60%-65% average), as well as less likely to agree that they are reluctant to make purchases in either online or store channels due to the past year’s data thefts, while Boomers and Seniors are more likely to agree.

"No retailer is immune to some fall-out from the credit card and personal information thefts that have been reported over the past year," said Hayley Silver, VP of Bizrate Insights. "Those courting Generation Y may feel slightly less urgency is needed to enact proactive remedies. However, those retailers with brick-and-mortar shoppers or older shoppers will want to react promptly.”

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