Cyber scams cause half of customers to lose trust in a brand

Callsign, the digital identity pioneer warms that the rise of scams is harming organisations’ reputations across the world. A global study of consumers revealed that just receiving a scam message purporting to be from any brand is enough for 49.8% of them to lose trust in the organisation regardless of any real association with the message.

Industries most targeted by fraudsters are financial services and ecommerce with consumers stating that of all scam messages they receive, 63% claim to represent their bank, or a retailer (36%). The scam problem is rampant across all communications channels.

Globally, on average, individuals who receive scam messages via all channels receive 1133 a year, with more than a quarter (27%) saying they receive more messages from fraudsters than friends and family! With 41% of consumers admitting they don’t report fraudulent messages, the scale of scam messaging and victims is likely to be underestimated.

“Fraud hides in volume and the rapid migration of the global population online in the last 18 months has led to the industrialization of scams. The consequence is fraudsters are using the same channels we’re using to authenticate genuine consumers, and this is harming organizations’ reputations with the decrease of trust in their brands,” explained Stuart Dobbie, SVP, Innovation, Callsign.

The survey is a reminder that consumers have a choice. Almost one fifth (19%) of consumers who have been a victim of fraud they have stopped using the company whose name the fraudster used to execute the scam. In comparison consumers are less likely to leave the channel the scam is executed through (only 10% would leave their network provider) demonstrating that regardless of the scam method, it’s the brand being mimicked that suffers.

SMS appears to be the weakest link with only 8% of consumers thinking it is a safe channel to communicate with their bank or retailer, and the channel has seen a 51% decrease in trust just because they have received a scam text message.

“Organisations need to re-evaluate the communications channels they use to interact with customers to better establish trust. With fraudsters monopolising open channels such as SMS and email, these channels cannot be relied upon to also authenticate identity. Our research shows that over a third (48%) of consumers think identity is the problem and that people should prove who they are when signing up to use a platform to stop scammers. These consumer concerns emphasise organisations must wake up to the importance of digital identification,” explained Dobbie.

Dobbie concluded: “If organisations are to maintain and build trust in the digital world, they need to better balance protection and experience to ensure their brand is not tarnished by scammers. With Intelligence Driven Authentication, organisations can overcome the fraudsters, protect their brand, create seamless and secure customer journeys and build all important digital trust.”

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