Security fears deterring UK contactless payments


Yet Londoners most likely to give contactless payments a go

Nearly half of smartphone users in the UK do not want to use their device to make contactless payments with worries about security issues cited as the main reason, a new survey has shown.

Altogether, 47% of people said they did not want to use their phone to make a payment, with 81% saying they had concerns about security about this type of payment.

Nearly 30% of people also felt contactless payment would make no improvement compared to existing technologies, said those questioned in the survey by YouGov on behalf of Firstsource Solutions, a business process management company.

The study also showed that men are substantially more likely than women to be willing to use their smartphone for contactless payment (45% male to 32% female). Women were more concerned about security than men, with 84% citing it as their main reason against using a smartphone for contactless payment.

Also, nearly four in ten (38%) of young people thought that the short battery life on smartphones made contactless an unreliable payment method.

However, younger people are more likely to use this payment method, with over half (55%) of 18 to 24 year olds willing to use their smartphone for making contactless payments.

That is significantly a lot more than the over 55 year old age group, where less than a quarter (24%) of would be willing to use their smartphone for contactless payment.

Yet although nearly half of all respondents don’t want to use their smartphone to make a contactless payment, a substantial minority (38%) would be prepared to do so. Additionally, Londoners are far more likely than people in the rest of the country to do it, with  45% of them willing to do this, compared to just 27% of people in Wales, which is the least likely region to use contactless.

Mike Sloman, vice president of business development, Firstsource Solutions, said: “This new survey shows that despite contactless payments being heralded as a huge step in making it easier to pay for items, people are still reluctant to use their phones because of security concerns. It appears the financial services industry and mobile providers still have a lot to do to convince the public of its merits.  More companies that are household names accepting contactless payments via smartphones will also increase confidence in the system.

“Until then, those companies that offer an alternative range of options to enable people to pay for goods and services are the ones that will enjoy most success,” Sloman concluded.

The survey was undertaken by YouGov and consisted of interviews with 2,168 nationally representative respondents.


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