Brits unconvinced by phone-based ID

Brits unconvinced by phone-based ID

UK consumers don't feel safe accessing their bank accounts over the phone, with 80% believing there are security gaps in current identity verification methods, according to research conducted by Harris Interactive.

The survey of over 500 adults, commissioned by voice identification firm Nuance Communications, found that 91% of financial services consumers are concerned about access fraud on their bank account, with just nine per cent of respondents saying they had "no concern" at all.

Whilst the majority of customers use passwords, PINs and security questions to verify their identity when accessing accounts, 58% admit to forgetting the information.

What's more, the methods people use to ensure they remember information - such as writing it down, re-using passwords across multiple accounts and using publicly accessible information like birth dates and mother's maiden names for challenge questions - leave security gaps for fraudsters to exploit.

The poll found strong support for voice verification technology, with 55% of respondents saying they "would prefer to do business" with a firm offering the system, says Nuance.

Nearly half - 47% - consider voice verification more secure than PIN-based systems and the same amount believe the technology is safer than security questions. Of those polled, 83% believe speaker verification is a secure way to protect account access and 74% would already be "likely" or "somewhat likely" to use it.

Whilst security is the main draw for respondents to speech verification technology, 38% also cite convenience revolving around ease of use, not having to remember details and cutting call duration.

"According to Cabinet Offices figures, in the UK in 2006, approximately 80,000 cases of identity and impersonation fraud were identified, costing the economy £1.5 billion," says Ian Turner, GM, Northern Emea, Nuance. "It is no surprise then that consumers are looking for improved security and view speaker verification as more secure than traditional means most often used today."

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