Online security triggers mixed feelings for users

Perceptions of threats to online security among consumers are fuelled by media stories and assumptions about risks, together with an expectation about their rights. In research carried out by Foviance for Oracle Corporation UK, 550 respondents together with a diary study of a sub-group of 24, showed contradictory attitudes.

Concerns about malware, spying, identity theft and loss of data by government were discovered. On close questioning, however, these views often conflicted with understanding of the issues. For example, 30 per cent do not trust online security measures.

The majority (70 per cent) blamed themselves for causing security problems, although one quarter saw login problems as the fault of the wesbite, brand or technology. In focus group, consumers showed no desire in understanding how online security technology works. They did have high expectations about their rights if affected by a security threat.

The research suggests that organisations need to understand that online security is an emotional issue. “It’s time to stop viewing IT security as a castle and moat, companies need to take a more sophisticated approach and that requires a shift in mindset,” says Des Powley, director security, Oracle UK and Ireland.

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