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Younger customers most likely to stop using financial firms that suffer data breaches.

Data breaches – emerging trends for financial services firms

68% of customers aged 18-24 say that they are likely to stop using a financial firm if it suffered a data breach.

With cyber security increasingly making headlines, Predatech has released the findings of the British Cyber Security Survey 2021 to measure awareness, attitudes and behaviours to cyber security.

Consumers were asked how likely they would be to stop using retail, financial and social media businesses should they suffer a data breach. 8% said that they were very likely to stop using a retail business that suffered a data breach, rising to 12% when asked about social media platforms and 21% when asked about financial firms.

Consumers aged 18-24 are far more likely to stop using a financial business if it suffered a data breach compared to other groups. 25% said that they were very likely and 43% said they were somewhat likely to stop using a financial business that had suffered a breach, against an average of 55% across all consumers. While younger customers may not be very forgiving of their financial providers, they are prepared to cut social media platforms a lot more slack. Just 7% of those aged 18-24 said that they’d be very likely to stop using a social media platform that had suffered a breach.

The survey also found that while 65% believe that they are well prepared against harmful cyber activity, 78% expect threats to increase over the coming year, rising to 88% among consumers aged 65+. 70% of consumers aged 65+ reported feeling well prepared against harmful cyber activity, compared to 57% of those aged 18-24 and 65% across all age groups. 40% of consumers aged 65+ also think about their cyber security daily, significantly higher than other age groups, and 18% believe that they are likely to become the victim of a cyber scam in 2021, compared to an average of 14% across all consumers.

Those aged 18-24 are less convinced that the threat is increasing. 71% believe that the cyber security threat will increase in 2021, compared to an average of 78% across all consumers. Just 57% of those aged 18-24 and 58% of those aged 25-34 believe that they’re well prepared to protect themselves against cyber attacks, marking these groups as the least confident about their own preparedness.

Jason Johnson, cyber security expert at Predatech said, “Overall people understand that the cyber threat is growing, but too many are missing the quick and easy steps that will help to safeguard them against these dangers. While financial firms and especially fast moving FinTechs should take heed of the findings, consumers should be a lot more aware of where they place their data online. Information from data breaches is often exposed publicly and can arm attackers with what they need to access other accounts and cause further damage.”

Consumers also shared what actions they take to improve their security. The top three most common actions cited are: Use a mixture of uppercase, lowercase, numbers and special characters in passwords (75%), enable password/passcode on all your devices (56%) and install antivirus (55%).

The responses also highlighted more generational differences. While 65% of consumers aged 55-64 and 68% of those 65+ have installed antivirus, it proved to be significantly less popular among those aged 18-24 and 25-34, with just 45% having antivirus installed. Conversely, two-factor authentication (2FA) proved to be popular with younger consumers, with some 42% of those aged 18-24 and 40% of those aged 25-34 using 2FA. Just 35% of consumers aged 55-64 and 27% of those aged 65+ use 2FA.

82% of Scottish residents told us that they expect the cyber threat to increase, the highest reported across any region. But just 12% believe that they will fall victim to a cyber scam in 2021, which is the lowest percentage reported

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