Almost half of British individuals harbour a "deep distrust" of internet shopping, as well as a lack of confidence in the ability of organisations and government bodies to protect their confidential data, new research has claimed.
Some 43 per cent of UK adults are put off shopping or banking online by security concerns, according to an NOP survey of 999 adults commissioned by Enterasys Networks.
The study noted that confidence levels in the ability of local government agencies to protect confidential information from external threats is also worryingly low.
Over a quarter of the population scored their local government security measures at one or two on a scale of five.
Banks, on the other hand, can be a little more confident, with 57 per cent of respondents awarding them a four or five out of five for security.
The degree of suspicion also extends to employers. Only 35 per cent feel 'very confident' in their employer's ability to keep confidential records secure.
Some 34 per cent of respondents believe that their data was more secure in the pre-digital age, when information was stored manually, than in the post-computer era when data is committed to disk.
Mark Pearce, a security specialist at Enterasys Networks, said: "The survey shows that the individual has little confidence in the ability of their employer or public organisation to effectively protect their confidential data.
"British businesses are often fearful to discuss publicly what steps they are taking to improve security internally.
"Unless we can convince more people that their data is secure they will vote with their feet and refuse to take advantage of the immense commercial advantages that digital business offers."
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