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The Green Sheet Online Edition

July 13, 2015 • Issue 15:07:01

Vanguard mobile shopper behaviors exposed

A recent Harris Poll conducted on behalf of Feedzai regarding consumer banking and shopping behaviors revealed how consumer demand for mobile shopping and banking anywhere, any time will continue to reshape the value proposition for banks, merchants and service providers. Poll results were published in a report titled 2015 Consumer Banking and Shopping Behaviors: Sentiment on Personal Data.

While 70 percent of those polled agreed that doing transactions at a physical bank is safer than online or mobile methods, 55 percent said they prefer to bank online or via mobile devices. When asked about the convenience factor, 46 percent of respondents with mobile banking apps admitted to banking in the bedroom, 30 percent the bathroom, 23 percent at a restaurant, 14 percent the local bar and 13 percent while driving.

Also worth noting, 18 percent of smartphone users polled said they shop on mobile devices while standing in line, adding yet another layer to the omnichannel shopping experience. To retain sales in-store, retailers must find ways to further engage mobile-enabled shoppers or potentially lose sales to competitors while shoppers are on premise, something ISOs can resolve by offering real-time mobile loyalty and discount programs.

Risky behaviors persist

Although respondents indicated a preference for the convenience of banking and shopping from virtually anywhere, security and privacy remain primary concerns. However, 77 percent of those surveyed said they had not changed shopping behavior as a result of the highly visible retail data breaches that have occurred in recent years.

"People use their smartphones as a tool to shop and bank … and leave behind an ever growing trail of digital data," said Nuno Sebastiao, Chief Executive Officer of Feedzai, who added that consumers are indeed concerned about the safety of this data.

While the vast majority of mobile consumers today remain unaffected by mobile data breaches, lack of awareness and adequate security measures could prove detrimental as mobile transactions and correlative cyber-criminal activity accelerate.

However, the survey suggests consumers are willing to give financial institutions access to personal data in exchange for protection. That said, information sharing is clearly divided by gender, with women less trusting across all lines of data sharing than men polled. Following is a breakdown of personal data sharing willingness by gender.

Men virus Women with mobile data

Mobile security threat rising

A 2015 Mobile Threat Report released by the Pulse Secure Mobile Threat Center offers further evidence why consumers should be concerned about mobile device security. According to the report, more mobile malware development occurred in 2015 than in any year previously studied with over 1 million unique malware samples identified.

"The growth of Android, especially outside of the U.S., continues to be the real target that malware developers have shown significant interest in," MTC said in the report. "This paradigm exists solely because the barrier of entry is much lower on Android handsets, and at 85 percent market share, malware developers are able to get their wares on the largest amount of devices by focusing on the platform that most consumers choose to carry."

The report indicated that Android was the target of 97 percent of mobile malware development in 2014. On the other hand, iOS users cannot afford to be complacent. MTC noted increased interest in the iOS platform among malware developers in 2014, whereas in prior years malware development in this segment was negligible.

The report also cautioned Android users that "a perfect storm of unsecure, out-of-date, low-end devices connecting to popular third-party app stores in densely populated areas, that are encountering one malicious application in every 20 applications being browsed and downloaded, now exists in the Android ecosystem."

All combined, these statistics indicate no matter what operating system is being deployed, mobile banking and transaction activities are risky business. Financial institutions and payment processors should thoroughly investigate app selection and malware detection tools for the merchants and consumers who rely on these services as a convenience. end of article

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