Report: Mobile Payments Usage up, Questions Remain

Nov. 4, 2013

While an apparently growing number of U.S. consumers are using their phones to make payments, security is still weighing on their minds, according to a new report from the Credit Union National Association (CUNA). More than half of consumers polled reported using their phones to make some form of mobile payment. At the same time, nearly 80 percent of respondents named security as their biggest concern with the technology.

Paul Gentile, executive vice president of CUNA said: “While there have been many advances made with mobile security in recent years, respondents’ concerns over security indicate financial institutions and companies in the mobile space must continue to stress their focus on security with their customers.”

While the results indicated adoption is high, a CUNA spokesperson confirmed that the survey defined mobile payments as any payment made using a mobile phone, which includes purchasing apps, payments within apps, purchasing downloadable or streaming digital content (e.g., on iTunes or Netflix) purchases made on mobile websites and traditional websites accessed on a smartphone or contactless purchases made at the point of sale or having a credit card accepted by a clerk using a phone with an attached dongle (e.g., a micromerchant using Square).

In addition to the security concerns, more than 43 percent said they would not leave their wallets or purses at home and only use their phone to make payments if they could.