One in three consumers has admitted that they do not know how to judge whether a website is secure or not.

 

In a survey carried out by SafeNet, over 50 per cent of people said that they are concerned about the security issues of buying gifts on the internet, despite three quarters of respondents saying they will shop online this Christmas.

 

Of the respondents, 72 per cent base their judgment on brand name, and only 14 per cent read the small print. One in ten will simply wait for a pop-up, or click-through option.

Gary Clark, vice president EMEA at SafeNet, said: “It is clear that if stores cannot provide their customers with the assurance of safe online transactions, they will be at a real disadvantage among their competitors. When customers come to enter their credit card details, they need 100 per cent confidence that their information will be protected.

 

“Companies that comply with a security standard – such as the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) – and communicate this to their customers, will be rewarded with success over Christmas. Both online and high street shops can benefit from the competitive advantage they will gain in comparison to non-compliant, unprotected retailers, who will ultimately lose business.”

Mike Davies, European director of identity and authentication services for VeriSign, said: “Online businesses and banks need to do more to help British citizens protect both their identities and their cash, adding extra layers of security and giving visual clues that a website is safe, such as padlock or a green address bar - technically known as Extended Validation SSL Certificates. Companies that do not use these techniques to reassure customers they are using a safe site risk losing business to those that do.”