Survey: 60% of consumers blame retailers in breaches

San Mateo, Calif. – Six-in-10 (60%) of those who knew about any data breaches at notable retailers, such as Target and Neiman Marcus, hold the merchant responsible for preventing future incidents of a data breach. The “2014 Consumer Reaction to Financial Data Breaches Study” of more than 2,000 adult U.S. consumers from Feedzai and Harris Interactive also found that 43% think nothing is more aggravating than getting credit/debit card data stolen.

Among U.S. adults who are aware of any data breaches, 60% believe merchants are responsible for preventing future incidents, while 13% believe responsibility falls on banks. Only 5% of these adults feel it is the consumer’s responsibility, and among males age 18-34, that increases to 10%. Twenty percent of these females age 18-34 believe the government bears the responsibility, while 13% of all those who are aware of any data breaches feel the government is most responsible.

And while the recent data breaches happened in physical stores, more than half (52%) of U.S. adults who are aware of any data breaches still believe shopping in a physical store is safer and more secure than shopping online when using debit or credit cards. More than one in five people (22%) who are aware of any data breach changed their shopping behavior due to recent retail data breaches. Nearly three-in-10 (28%) U.S. adults who are aware of any data breach have stopped shopping at the affected retailers. Among those aged 35-44, the proportion increases to nearly four-in-10 (36%).

Other notable findings include:

• While 40 % of those aware of any data breaches say they started using cash for more of their purchases when shopping, the proportions rise for those aged 18-34 (43%) and those aged 35-44 (45%).

• 32% of those who are aware of any data breaches aged 65 and older say they are using more cash.

• While more than half of those aware of data breaches (51%) believe data breaches are an expected part of the experience when shopping with credit or debit cards, there are sharp distinctions between age groups.

• Almost three-in-five (58%) of those who are aware of data breaches between the age of 18 and 34 believe data breaches are part of the shopping experience, while only 38% of those who are aware of data breaches age 55-64, believe that is true.

“Fraud prevention is now a matter of predicting complex consumer behavior based on changing sentiments,” said Dr. Pedro Bizarro, chief data scientist of Feedzai. “These findings show that consumers believe it is the merchant’s responsibility, but really it is a collective problem that the industry needs to understand in order to distinguish customers from criminals and keep payment data safe.”


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