Consumers prefer cash to frictionless payments amid security and privacy concerns

The shift towards ‘frictionless’ payments is being held back by consumer concerns over security and data privacy, according to new global research conducted by Paysafe

  • 50% of the study cite fraud as the biggest barrier to using them. 48% express concerns around the use of their data
  • 65% think voice-activated systems are not secure whilst 63% are worried about being overcharged.
  • 56% reported that checkout-free stores — where smart technologies tally items in the shopping basket and automate payments — sound too risky, or said they’d need to know more before using them

Perhaps surprisingly, cash continues to thrive as the most common form of payment:

  • 87% of consumers used it in the past month to make a purchase.
  • ATM visits were up too – 83% had visited one in the last month compared to 75% in 2017.

The report also highlights the growth of digital wallets:

  • 61% of UK respondents for example had used one for an online purchase in the past month – more than either credit or debit cards.
  • Digital wallet usage averaged 50% globally and ranged from 39% in the US to a high of 61% in the UK.

Despite the apparent benefits of low-friction payment technologies, these findings suggest many consumers aren’t ready to lose visibility of the payment process. It’s clear that the benefits are not unilaterally agreed upon, with cultural and infrastructure trends at play, and it may be some time before adoption is widespread. 

Oscar Nieboer, chief marketing officer, Paysafe Group

The report, called Lost in Transaction: Payment Trends 2018, is an international research study (5,000 respondents) investigating consumer attitudes to new and traditional payment methods. The research incorporates consumer views from the UK, US, Canada, Germany and Austria, and draws comparisons with Paysafe’s inaugural Lost in Transaction report in 2017.