Close to three-quarters (71%) of consumers in Asia-Pacific regard security as their top priority when going online, yet two-thirds (67%) of businesses in the region experienced an increase in online fraud-related losses over the past 12 months.

These are some of the headline findings from a survey of 6,000 consumers and 590 businesses across the region conducted by Experian, the consumer credit reporting firm.

For its 2019 Asia-Pacific Identity and Fraud Report, Experian sought to establish the key factors that matter most to consumers for gaining trust and confidence in an increasingly digital world and whether businesses are delivering the experiences that consumers expect.

The survey found that 73% of APAC consumers are willing to undergo a more thorough process when opening an account if this meant they could get a more convenient experience at a later date.

And another 81% feel strongly that it is important for businesses to be fully transparent about how their personal information is used.

Looking specifically at Singapore, the report found that a slightly smaller proportion of consumers (67%) than the regional average valued security as the most important element of their online experience, followed by convenience (24%) and personalisation (9%).

It also found that 63% of businesses in Singapore had experienced an increase in online fraud-related losses over the past year, including account takeover attacks and fraudulent account openings.

“With interactions between businesses and consumers increasingly taking place over digital channels, building an environment characterised by security and mutual trust should be a leading priority,” said Dev Dhiman, managing director, Southeast Asia and emerging markets, Experian.

“It will be imperative for business leaders to invest in identity verification and fraud management capabilities to realise the full potential of Singapore’s digital economy.”

To some extent, it appears that businesses are responding to this need because the survey found that 56% of businesses in Singapore already have invested more in programs designed to increase transparency in the past six months, while 51% plan to invest more in such initiatives.

“One approach that has proven both effective and well received among consumers is biometrics, which speeds up and simplifies the identity verification process for consumers,” said Dhiman.

Sourced from Experian; additional content by WARC staff