Consumers across Southeast Asia and Greater China cited identity theft and ATM-related fraud as the top two security concerns when it comes to electronic payments. About 42% of consumers in Southeast Asia (Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore Thailand, and Vietnam) were most concerned with ATM-related fraud such as a stolen card, card cloning or skimming. In the Greater China markets (China, Hong Kong and Taiwan), this figure was 31%.
According to the inaugural MasterCard Safety and Security Index across Southeast Asia (35%) and Greater China (32%) were almost as equally concerned about identity theft in relation to data breaches. This includes personal data such as bank details, personal IDs, addresses, and signatures that are stolen or compromised through websites. In both regions however, it appears that these concerns do not directly stem from consumers’ own personal experiences but rather, as a result of the perceived severity of fraud based on what was reported in the media.
The Index also showed that in general, consumers across Southeast Asia, and the markets of Taiwan and Hong Kong still feel safer paying in a brick and mortar environment as opposed to online. In this regard however, China differed, being the only market where consumers felt paying online was safer than in an actual brick and mortar store; even more so than in Singapore.
When looking at online payments, almost every consumer in the Greater China markets had made an online payment in the past year. Consumers in China (62%) particularly favored the use of digital wallets in online electronic payments over those in Hong Kong (14%) and Taiwan (29%).
Meanwhile, the Index also reinforced that banks continue to play a critical role in ensuring payment safety and security for consumers in Southeast Asia. This is both, because of the high levels of trust consumers place in banks as well as the reliance that consumers have on banks to help them resolve issues that crop up in this area. Banks are often the first line of defense and recourse for the affected consumer – nearly half of all consumers in Southeast Asia who experienced ATM fraud first approached their card-issuing banks for advice.
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