Security worries do not deter consumers from opening online bank accounts, but may be a decisive factor in customer retention according to Datamonitor's third annual interactive consumer survey, Impact 2001.
The study shows lack of knowledge and cost of using the Internet as the over-riding obstacles to online banking uptake.
When asked to name their concerns with the Internet in general, security is the top issue among the online population, followed by information reliability. The survey finds consumers in the US and UK are more concerned with security than their counterparts in other countries.
Derrick Brown, Datamonitor e-financial services analyst, says: "For online financial services providers, security is therefore key for customer retention, however it may not be the key or sole issue to address when enticing consumers online in the first place."
Analysis of the Impact 2001 data also reveals that, in most countries, people with Internet access at work are significantly more likely to use online financial services than those who access the Net solely from home. In the UK over 80% of online banking enquiries come during work hours. If Internet access were restricted in the workplace, online banks would have a much smaller consumer base, warns Datamonitor.
For the Impact 2001 survey, Datamonitor conducted 7,500 interviews with consumers in the US, UK, France, Germany, Spain Sweden and Italy.