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US Consumers Consider Bitcoin More Secure Than Mobile Payment Systems

Thursday, June 18th, 2015

As per the results of a new survey, many American consumers now consider Bitcoin to be far more secure than mobile payment systems. The survey was conducted by Chicago based Walker Sands Communications and was the second such study to be done by the company. The company surveyed 1400 American adults who regularly shopped online and published the results as part of Walker Sands 2015 Future of Retail Survey. The aim of the survey was to discover emerging trends in retail and find changes in consumer behavior especially those related to transactions made through digital modes of payments.

The survey results show that, despite their widespread availability and push by banks and financial institutions, mobile payment methods (such as wallets and app) are considered to be the least secure methods of payments, ranking below checks and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. The survey throws many other surprising results as well like how consumers are still preferring cash over other methods of payments, how digital methods of payments are gaining traction, how Apple Pay has accelerated awareness about mobile payment systems and how customers are yearning for an omni-channel shopping experience.

As per the survey results published by Walker Sands, 56 percent of respondents still considered cash as the most secure form of payment. Among other modes of payments, Credit Cards ranked second best with 22 percent respondents voting for them while Debit Cards stood at third place with 16 percent votes. As far as digital payment methods were considered, Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin managed to secure 3 percent votes while mobile payment methods (including apps and wallets) could muster just 1 percent of the total votes. The survey results also show a marked decline in the usage of checks with just 2 percent of the respondents preferring them over other methods of payments.

The survey results also indicate that the usage of mobile payment apps went up by 8 percent as compared to the last year. The trend seems to have gained traction with the introduction of Apple Pay with 18 percent respondents (36 percent of iPhone users) saying that they are likely to make a purchase through the payment system in the near future. However, among the survey participants, just 4% admitted to using Apple Pay in real life while the scores for other payment systems and apps were far better (45 percent for Google wallet, 41 percent for banking apps and 33 percent for retailers’ apps).

The survey report also shows that even though mobile payment services are rising in popularity, as many as 80 percent of the consumers are still hesitant to use them due to privacy and security concerns. This could be attributed to the recent wave of attacks against POS terminals as well as continuous increase in fraudulent transactions done through stolen credit cards. The report says that mainstream adoption of mobile payment systems, including Apple Pay, is likely to be delayed until people are 100% assured of their security. The report also suggests that with the usage of cash on decline and frequent hacking scandals shaking the confidence of customers in POS systems, retailers who move to mobile payment systems and assure their customers of their safety could offer the best of both (traditional as well as digital) worlds.

June 18, 2015

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