Generali Global Assistance Releases Findings From Its Annual Survey on Holiday Shopping Patterns and the Resulting Issue of Consumer Identity Theft

Survey shows decreasing concern of data theft amidst increasing data breach environment.

Generali Global Assistance, a developer of a proprietary and innovative identity and digital protection platform, has announced the findings of its third-annual holiday shopper survey which identifies holiday shopping trends and consumer sentiment on the identity theft risks holiday shopping poses.

This year, survey results show customers who indicated that they would be concerned about doing business with a retailer if they experienced a breach has decreased. This year, 79 percent of shoppers are concerned about purchasing from retailers who experienced a data breach in the past compared to 83 percent last year, highlighting a potential trend of consumer apathy toward data breaches. According to 61 percent of respondents, retailers can look to alleviate consumer concerns by offering identity protection services – up 6 percent from the year prior.

This year, the survey found that Americans will be splitting their shopping via online and physical channels with 65 percent indicating they would purchase online via a retailer’s website and 63 percent indicated they would do their shopping at a brick and mortar store. Ordering online via mobile app (33%) and online ordering with in-store pick up (18%) were also popular among shoppers this year. Whether it’s brick-and-mortar or online, 67 percent of holiday shoppers plan to shop at 2-5 stores, with another 25 percent saying they will go to more than six stores this holiday season. 

This year respondents were asked to indicate which of the top three retailers (Amazon, Walmart, and Target) they would trust the most with their data. Amazon was considered the most trustworthy by far with 50 percent of shoppers indicating they trusted the online retail behemoth the most. Walmart won the trust of 24 percent of shoppers, while only 8 percent trusted Target to protect their personal data.  

Paige Schaffer, CEO, Global Identity and Cyber Protection Services, commented on today’s news, “With online retail creating a movement toward credit card purchases, the average consumer is providing identity thieves with more exposure to their personal data than ever before. After some of the major breaches we saw impact credit card providers, we updated the focus of this year’s survey to look at consumers’ feelings around using credit cards, which can create multiple access points for identity thieves to exploit.” 

When it comes to identity theft, data breaches to online merchants (47%) were still the biggest threat in shoppers’ minds. Even after the high-profile breaches of credit card providers that occurred this past year, only 37 percent of consumers indicated that they felt a breach of their card provider was the greatest threat. Thirty percent believed brick-and-mortar point-of-sale systems were the biggest threat to their identity (up 5% last year), while 25 percent felt physical identity theft by either break-in or pickpocket was the greatest threat.

When asked how many credit cards they would use when doing their holiday shopping this year, 39 percent of shoppers indicated they would use more than one card. When asked why, 35 percent indicated they wanted to earn points or miles, 32 percent wanted to spread the cost among multiple cards, and 30 percent wanted to take advantage of retailer-specific deals.

Results also show that Millennials favor using multiple cards to earn points or miles while older generations preferred to spread the cost or take advantage of retailer-related rewards. As recent breaches have shown, having multiple credit cards to take advantage of miles or discounts can pose a major risk to a shopper’s identity.  

Schaffer concluded, “It’s important for shoppers to remain alert and monitor their credit card activity during this holiday shopping season.  We recommend shoppers who use credit cards look for ones that provide identity protection services as well as anti-fraud features such as notification alerts for transactions. This will help consumers avoid the added stress of having to deal with a stolen identity while searching for that perfect gift.”

To learn more about Generali Global Assistance’s identity protection offering, please visit https://www.irisidentityprotection.com/

Survey Methodology 

The “Holiday Identity Theft” survey was conducted by ORC on behalf of Generali Global Assistance between October 31 and November 3, 2019.  The survey was conducted online with a sample of 1,004 U.S. adults 18 years of age and older, comprised of 502 men and 502 women.   

About Generali Global Assistance 

Generali Global Assistance has been a leading provider of identity and digital protection solutions, travel insurance, and other assistance services for more than 35 years.  The Company offers a full suite of innovative, vertically integrated travel insurance and emergency services, identity protection solutions, and beneficiary companion services.  Generali Global Assistance is part of the multinational Generali Group, which for over 185 years has created a presence in 60 countries with over 74,000 employees.  Our success has been built on the foundation of trust that clients have placed in our ability to provide assistance in the most difficult of circumstances.

GGA Media Contact 
Jay A. Morakis 
M Group Strategic Communications (for Generali Global Assistance North America)  
+1 646.859.5951 
jmorakis@mgroupsc.com 

Tags: News

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