Report: U.S. Consumers Still Stinging from Retail Breaches, Split on Biometrics

July 9, 2015

Report: U.S. Consumers Still Stinging from Retail Breaches, Split on Biometrics A new survey from global IT firm Unisys shows U.S. consumers think data breaches of retailers and government agencies are the most likely. Also, they are not sold on biometrics as an authentication method. Forty-four percent of U.S. consumers describe the chances of their personal information being compromised in a retail data breach as “likely.” Concern is also high regarding government agencies (39 percent). They remain more confident in banks, where just 24 percent of consumers think it’s likely their personal information will be compromised by a bank security breach in the next 12 months.

Unisys also explored if consumers think biometrics will make smartphones more secure. And, the jury is split: 38 percent say yes, biometrics will strengthen the security of their information on a smartphone, while 25 percent say no and 37 percent don’t know.

“Interestingly, despite the recent targeting of high-profile banks by hackers, the perceived threat of data breach is low among banks, possibly reflecting traditional high levels of trust in the security of these organizations,” the report’s authors wrote. “Biometric techniques like voice, signature and facial recognition allow for advanced authentication, and leverage built-in capabilities of next generation devices. The awareness about benefits of biometrics as a security measure seem to be low among consumers, and organizations need to educate them to improve adoption.”