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A quarter of consumers would use a hacked retailer's site

While more than two thirds (68 per cent) of online users would immediately stop using a bank or retailer if the site suffered a security attack or data breach, a quarter would continue using the site. This is according to a survey conducted for global information security and risk management company, NTT Com Security.

The poll of more than 500 UK consumers explores ‘consumer trust’ in online sites, including retailers, banks, social networks and dating sites, and comes in the wake of a number of major security breaches and ahead of one of the biggest online shopping periods – Black Friday and Christmas, over the next few weeks.

According to the survey, less than a third of people plan to shop online for bargains over Black Friday this week (27 November), with the majority (70 per cent) saying they have no plans to do so. Less than a quarter (23 per cent) will do ‘some’ shopping online, while just 7 per cent will do ‘most’ or ‘all’ of it online.

However, nearly all (79 per cent) will do ‘most’ or ‘some’ Christmas shopping online. When asked what they would do if their online bank or retailer suffered a security attack, nearly a quarter (24 per cent) would stop using the site and move to another supplier, and 44 per cent would stop using it until the problem was fixed. However, 14 per cent would only stop using the site if it suffered another security problem, while 11 per cent would carry on using it anyway.

Theft of credit card information (84%) is seen as the biggest threat to privacy when online, followed by identity theft (80 per cent), viruses (70 per cent), scam emails (60 per cent) and governments/companies.

Concerns over privacy/safety of personal information (66 per cent) and fears over fake or fraudulent websites (69 per cent) are the top reasons that prevent people from using an online site, while 32 per cent worry about making online payments.

Banks are the most trustworthy websites, followed by healthcare providers (doctors/ hospitals) and insurance firms. Online dating sites are the least trustworthy, followed by social networks.