Secure payment: Younger consumers value convenience
Security is the most important aspect of payment for six out of ten consumers. But the younger part of the population in particular attaches almost as much importance to convenience and speed. This is the result of a representative survey conducted by Visa in cooperation with the opinion research institute forsa. The approval of payments with fingerprint or PIN offers the perceived best balance of security and convenience from the consumer's point of view. Consumers also rate passwords and one-time codes as very secure, but only as mediocre practicable. Facial recognition lies in between in the perception of the respondents (see chart). There is a clear age difference in use. Biometric methods are twice as popular among consumers under the age of 34 as among those over 60 (46% vs. 23%). One possible reason for this, according to the survey, is that consumers over the age of 60 in particular are worried about security and data when paying with their smartphones. "We need more education about the security of digital payment methods", says Visa. "After all, the biometric release of payments with a smartphone is a major step forward for more security when paying."
Consumers greatly overestimate the risk of fraud
On average, respondents believe that every tenth card payment is affected by fraud. "The risk of fraud in digital payments is greatly overestimated by consumers," says Visa. In fact, only one in 10,000 payment transactions is a successful fraud attempt, according to data from Visa. For example, the fraud rate for Visa payments is currently at a low of less than 0.1 percent - among the lowest of all payment forms. And even in these rare cases, Visa’s liability rules protect consumers if cardholders have not authorized a payment themselves.
Data is safe when paying with a smartphone
Only about a third (37%) of those surveyed consider the payment data to be secure when paying at the checkout with a smartphone or wearable. At the same time, mobile payment is protected by token technology. This is because a randomly generated placeholder is stored on the device instead of the card number. "In the case of a token payment, no real card data is transmitted to the merchant terminal," says Visa. "Even if criminals got hold of this token, it would be worthless." Tokens are already used in every third digital Visa transaction in Europe. Globally, Visa has now issued over 6 billion tokens, two billion more than the typical cards (more than 4 billion).
Name, address and shopping list will not be transferred when paying by card
Three out of four consumers (76%) think that the cardholder's name is transmitted when paying cards in the store. After all, one in five (20%) also believes that their own address and the goods they have purchased will also be transmitted. "No personal data such s name of the cardholder or the address is stored on the card chip," explains Visa. Therefore, they are not transmitted at the time of payment." Also, the shopping list is not sent to the card organization or bank when paying. In fact, an international ISO standard specifies exactly the data that is transmitted to make a payment: these are mainly the card number, amount, country and currency, as well as information about the merchant and the time of the transaction.
Contactless payment is just as secure as inserting the card into the terminal
Although consumers have been making contactless payments by card in around 9 out of 10 cases since the pandemic, only 75 percent rate this as secure. On the other hand, inserting the card into the payment terminal is rated as safe by 86 percent. "We do not see an increased risk of fraud from contactless payments, although these have increased. In fact, four out of five payments made in stores in Europe are now contactless. Entering a PIN is usually not necessary for amounts below 50 euros", says Visa.
Human safety factor
An essential factor for security remains the person who operates the digital technology. Many people write down passwords and PINs so as not to forget them. For example, the survey reveals that one in three has written down their card PIN by hand (13%) or stored it on their smartphone (18%). One in four has already revealed their PIN to someone (26%), and almost as many know their partner's PIN (23%). Three percent of those surveyed even carry the PIN in their wallets. "Consumers should never share PINs and other security codes necessary to approve transactions," says Visa. "Biometricmethods such as fingerprint and facial recognition are a real step forward. They effectively combine security with convenience."
Despite existing security reservations, cashless payment has a firm place in the everyday lives of people in Germany. For the future, 34 percent of those surveyed would like to see more acceptance points in brick-and-mortar retail where they can pay by card, smartphone or wearable. One in five would like to say goodbye to their physical wallet altogether and digitize all their cards.
In cooperation with the opinion research institute forsa, Visa conducted a representative online survey between May and June 2023, asking more than 1,000 consumers in Germany aged 18 and over about their perceptions of secure payment. Part of the survey included the perception of security with regard to different payment methods and the level of knowledge of consumers on the subject of data transmission.
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