ID Theft Fears May Impact Holiday Sales

In addition, 74 percent of those planning to shop are either very or somewhat concerned about a data breach.

NORTH AMERICA–Nearly 84 percent of Americans believe their inclination to shop at a particular retailer during the holiday season would be impacted if the retailer experienced a data breach in the past, according to a survey conducted by assistance service company Generali Global Assistance.

Generali Global Assistance also found that 91 percent of Americans plan to do some form of holiday shopping this season; however, most are skeptical that businesses are doing all that they can to protect their personal information. For example, 40 percent of consumers believe businesses are not doing all they can, while 38 percent are unsure if businesses are doing enough to safeguard information. Furthermore, 75 percent of those planning to shop for the holidays indicated that they are either very or somewhat concerned about a data breach.

Additionally, 55 percent of those surveyed would have more confidence that business are working to protect their data and reduce their risk of identity theft if they were to offer identity protection services.

The survey also found that over half of shoppers (57 percent) believe a data breach of an online merchant will pose the greatest threat this holiday season; meanwhile, 22 percent consider a data breach of a brick-and-mortar point-of-sale system to be the most acute risk.

Finally, despite concerns over data breaches, Generali Global found that the most popular form of payment will be credit cards, followed by cash (49 percent) and debit cards (41 percent). Only 8 percent of shoppers are expected to pay with a check and 3 percent will utilize mobile payments.

“Consumers are clearly more concerned than ever about identity theft and related issues as we enter the 2017 holiday season. With data breaches at major organizations occurring so frequently and impacting literally millions of people in the U.S. alone, consumer confidence in the ability of businesses to protect their data has been shaken,” says Paige Schaffer, president and chief operating officer, identity and digital protection services global unit, Generali Global Assistance. “This is why identity protection is so essential in this day-in-age. For many consumers, stress is at a year-round high during the holiday season. Offering identity protection is an effective way for businesses to help restore trust in their commitment to protecting customer data, as well as provide more peace-of-mind to consumers so they can focus what matters most to them this holiday season.” 

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