Security concerns keep consumers away from mobile payments

Sabrina Karl
Personal Finance Writer
Data whiz and visual storyteller


Despite the rapid rise of mobile payments, 1 in 4 Americans are resisting the practice, with hesitations centered on security and privacy concerns, as well as simply feeling they don’t need the technology.

In the third wave of a study by First Annapolis Consulting, the share of Americans who have made at least one mobile payment in the past 12 months is now 74 percent, up from 58 percent just six months ago and 40 percent in May 2015.

But that leaves 26 percent of respondents who have yet to try mobile payments, whether it’s using their phone to make an in-app purchase, pay a bill, receive loyalty points on an in-store purchase, or make any number of other mobile money transfer transactions.

When asked what’s holding them back from mobile payments, the most-common response was concern about security, from almost two-thirds of the nonusers (64 percent). That response was fairly similar across all age groups.

A feeling that they simply don’t need mobile payments was second at 42 percent, followed by privacy concerns at 41 percent. In both cases, respondents ages 45-54 (the oldest age group delineated in the findings) were more likely than younger respondents to cite the concern.

The feeling that mobile payments are less convenient than traditional methods was reported by only 18 percent of the non-users. However, the survey’s youngest respondents – those under 35 – were surprisingly more than twice as likely to cite the perceived inconvenience as all the survey respondents age 35 or older.

First Annapolis’ third flight of its study was conducted in June among 1,528 U.S. consumers age 18-54 who both own a smartphone and have a checking account or debit card. Like its previous editions conducted in December 2015 and May 2015, the sample demographics were generally aligned with U.S. Census distributions. The latest findings were released Aug. 18.




See related: Infographic: Gen Z leads in use of mobile payments, Infographic: Mobile payments quickly rising, More infographics

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Updated: 04-21-2019