Survey shows erosion of digital trust among consumers

Dubai - The survey revealed that almost a quarter of consumers (24 per cent) said their trust in businesses such as banks, retailers, mobile network operators and delivery companies, has decreased due to persistent scams spoofing brand names



Consumers are calling on businesses to do more to keep them safe and when it comes to stopping fraud and scammers, consumers know what action they want organisations to take. -- File photo
Consumers are calling on businesses to do more to keep them safe and when it comes to stopping fraud and scammers, consumers know what action they want organisations to take. -- File photo
by

Issac John

Published: Mon 27 Sep 2021, 5:55 PM

Consumers in the Middle East Africa region expect banks, retailers and mobile operators to do more to protect them and their personal information from fraudsters.

Participants in a consumer survey conducted by Callsign, a digital trust pioneer, said their trust in those organisations is eroding fast because they are drowning in scam messages from fraudsters spoofing brand names daily.

“It’s time to re-think fraud prevention strategies. Identifying genuine users through their behaviours will allow us to identify users online and re-establish digital trust,” Stuart Dobbie, senior vice president, Innovation, Callsign, said in a statement.

“Our data demonstrate that consumer trust in the digital world has vanished and, rightly or wrongly, brands are being blamed. Yet the sense is that little is being actually done to purposely re-establish digital trust through complete and accurate digital identities,” he said.

The problem has become so pervasive that consumers don’t trust the technology and processes designed to protect them from fraudsters. They insist that users must prove beyond doubt who they are when logging in to use a platform, and that there should be an online identity system to quell the surge of scams, said the statement.

The survey revealed that almost a quarter of consumers (24 per cent) said their trust in businesses such as banks, retailers, mobile network operators and delivery companies, has decreased due to persistent scams spoofing brand names. With regional consumers (59 per cent) asking mobile network operators to do more to stop scammers using their platforms, and half of customers (50 per cent) asking the same of banks.

People claim to have received scams through email (64 per cent), SMS (67 per cent), phone (44 per cent, messaging apps (45 per cent) and social media (36 per cent) in the last year. But over a third (38 per cent) of global consumers don’t know where or who to report a scam message to, or simply get too many to bother (37 per cent). Nearly half of MEA consumers don’t trust organizations to keep their data safe; 49 per cent of scam victims react with suspicion wanting to know where fraudsters got their details.

Consumers are calling on businesses to do more to keep them safe and when it comes to stopping fraud and scammers, consumers know what action they want organisations to take. Nearly half of MEA customers (48 per cent) think users should have to prove who they are when logging into a platform.

“With consumers feeling the brunt of perceived inaction by organizations, it’s no surprise that they are asking for more protection. If we continue to be unable to know and trust that the person is who they say they are online, large parts of our society will stop working. Digital Trust is about the confidence we have in the technology, processes, and people to secure our digital world. Digital Trust is underpinned by digital identities, and the fact that scams are running wild proves that our digital identities are well and truly broken,” said Dobbie.

The statement said the solution lies in re-thinking how we fight fraud and how we identify people online. Current approaches tackle both challenges by actively identifying fraud. The problem with this approach is that a fraudster using stolen credentials looks like a genuine user gaining access to accounts or executing transactions. If instead fraud strategies look to positively identify only genuine users, this automatically and simultaneously prevents fraud.

According to Callsign, the most proven way to do this is by layering behavioral biometrics over threat detection, device, and location data. Through a simple swipe of a phone, typing pressure, mouse movements, or device angles, users can be personally recognized to a 99.999 per cent accuracy. Organisations eliminate one point of failure in the authentication process and achieve two-factor authentication with minimal friction.

-- issacjohn@khaleejtimes.com


More news from Tech