Majority of the world fears Black Friday and Cyber Monday

For many of us, online shopping is now second nature. We've been at it for years. Hell, I try to buy most of my stuff from retailers like Amazon.

With that said, many people are still afraid of online shopping, and it is not a phobia that is totally devoid of logic. When buying on the web, your credit card number could be compromised; especially if the retailer is not trustworthy, or simply not focused on security. Black Friday and Cyber Monday are almost here, so the results of a new study are quite timely -- 77 per cent of people in the world do not feel safe shopping online.

"Global information security company NCC Group today released results of an international survey that shows most consumers do not feel safe when shopping online and many are shying away from their favorite retailers as a result. According to the 'Trust in the Internet' survey, nearly eight out of 10 people (77 per cent) do not feel very safe when shopping online and, with the holidays just a few weeks away, nearly a quarter reveal they are doing less online due to security concerns (23 per cent)", says The NCC Group.

Rob Cotton, CEO of NCC Group explains, "the convenience of online shopping is a significant pull for many consumers and spending around peak retail periods has increased year-on-year. However, demand on retailers to address security is reaching a critical point. The recent spate of high profile data breaches has clearly had an impact on online trust, and consumers are now placing responsibility squarely with retailers to tackle this issue. Some 84 percent of consumers believe companies should compensate customers financially for their loss if they experience a breach".

The NCC Group shares the following findings from the study:

  • Only two-in-10 consumers admit they feel very secure while shopping on the web (21 per cent); fewer than one-in-10 say they strongly agree that they are comfortable sharing financial details and completing financial transactions online (8 per cent)
  • 62 per cent of consumers say they are more concerned about online security now than they have ever been
  • Only eight per cent of consumers say they strongly agree that they are comfortable sharing financial details and completing financial transactions online overall
  • One-in-three consumers expect to be the victim of a breach 'any minute' (29 per cent), and 64 per cent believe they will be the victim of a breach within the next 12 months
  • 56 per cent of consumers said that in order to complete online transactions, they often must share information that they would normally not feel comfortable sharing online
  • 68 per cent of consumers say they would be more likely to do business with companies within an online community made up of secure/safe websites, where only verified brands operate

For the most part, online shopping can be very safe; however, buying from a reputable retailer is paramount. If you Google a product and select an online store at random, you may regret it. A great way to prevent fraud and identity theft is to visit online stores that have a physical presence that you trust. For example, do you shop at the brick-and-mortar PCWorld, John Lewis and Debenhams? If so, you should be safe on their websites.

Do you shop online? Which websites do you use and trust? Tell us know in the comments.

Photo Credit: melis / Shutterstock