In India, respondents over 35 saw the largest increase in digital interactions during the pandemic and expect this behaviour to continue, with 36% of all respondents saying that they do not plan to delete or deactivate any of their accounts. Nearly half re-use the same credentials that they have used for other accounts, with 82% using the same passwords, leading to concerns around security for enterprises.
“The big takeaway from this survey is that consumers have become accustomed to the convenience of digital interactions during the pandemic, and this trend is expected to continue even after society returns to pre-pandemic norms. Companies that are more reliant on digital engagement with consumers during the pandemic must consider the effects of these changes on their security risk profile,” said Prashant Bhatkal, Security Software Sales Leader, IBM Technology Sales, India/South Asia. The study was conducted by Morning Consult across 22,000 respondents in 22 markets, including India.
Over half the respondents across demographics, except GenZers, would rather place and pay for an order digitally than go to a physical location or call to place an order even if they had concerns about the app’s safety or privacy. Security and Privacy were top reasons to avoid using an app – but most still choose to use either way.
About four in ten Indian respondents would avoid using an online platform to shop or place an order over concerns over app or website privacy (40%) and concerns over an app or website security (38%). Half the respondents in India said they would remove permission for an application track behaviour if the app were tracking activity across other apps and websites. Four out of ten (39%) said that they allow an application to track activities across other apps and websites when asked.
Consumers’ lax approach to security, combined with rapid digital transformation by businesses during the pandemic, may provide attackers with further ammunition to propagate cyberattacks across industries – from ransomware to data theft, said the study. According to IBM Security X-Force, bad personal security habits may also carry over to the workplace and can lead to costly security incidents for companies, with compromised user credentials representing one of the top root sources of cyberattacks reported in 2020.
About 40% of Indian respondents have given up on an online purchase, application, or transaction based on negative experiences logging in (42%), signing up (40%), or completing the payment (41%) and over half expect to spend less than 5 minutes in setting up a new account, the study found.