96% of consumers worried about privacy

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Seventy-five percent of consumers are conducting digital transactions, although 96% are worried about privacy.

It seems even the launch of Apple's new facial recognition in the iPhone X hasn't calmed the fears of consumers, as a new data privacy study reveals that 96% of shoppers express being "somewhat" or "extremely" concerned about data collection and use.

The study, released by A.T. Kearney, shows 75% of consumers are conducting digital payment transactions at least once a month and therefore are highly concerned with how their data are being managed. 

The rate of card-on-file being the primary method of payment for online purchases grew from 38% in 2015 to 44% in 2016. And among those consumers who keep cards on file, 44% have already given their payment data to be held on file to more than five retailers. 

Further, consumers are divided on what they believe retailers should be allowed to do with their personal data on file. About 34% responded that use of their payment data is an invasion of privacy that should be prohibited, but another 36% of consumers can see the benefits of data sharing if compensation is included.

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Consumers had significantly lower trust in retailers holding their personal information than their primary bank. As many as 65% said they felt comfortable with the bank having their information; only 34% felt comfortable with Amazon, 22% with Apple, 17% with Google and 10% with other large national retailers having those data. 

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"Our research shows that a significant majority of U.S. consumers have serious concerns about the privacy of their data. A level of frustration exists over the inability to act on their concerns. With growing consumer interest in this issue, there is the need to both have the service solutions and the public policy in place that will help protect consumer data, while allowing consumers to share it in ways they want to," said Bob Hedges, lead partner in A.T. Kearney's global financial services practice and co-author of the study.