Internet security concerns are likely to have a detrimental effect on online shopping in the UK this Christmas, according to recent research conducted on behalf of industry association the Business Software Alliance (BSA).
The organisation reports that 84 per cent of UK consumers believe that retailers have not done enough to protect their customers online, while 51 per cent believe that security concerns will negatively impact online shopping over the Christmas period.
According to the study, 74 per cent of UK consumers would like to know more about protecting themselves online, although many are taking their own steps. Indeed, more than half (56 per cent) of respondents said they are planning to upgrade their computer security in the next three months and 25 per cent said they already have five different kinds of security software products including antivirus and email filtering software installed.
Consumers’ top concerns about protecting themselves online are topped by concerns over their personal information from being sold to a third party (79 per cent), with 75 per cent citing identity theft as a main concern.
The BSA advises that consumers should always check they have the latest security updates installed, as well as install some antivirus software and make sure it is activated. To further ensure protection, consumers should install a firewall.
The organisation recommends users trust their instincts when buying online. If the price seems “too good to be true,” it probably is, the group said. Shoppers should ensure secure payment before giving payment information, and get a clear explanation of the merchant’s policies concerning returns and refunds. They should also check shipping costs, and security and privacy protection before completing the transaction.
The BSA has developed a website to provide advice and guidance on Internet security related issues.
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