Asians have a high level of trust in digital channels with the Philippines sharing that the most trustworthy of all digital channels are websites like search engines and online databases used for work while putting premium on new security applications and technology and security training on businesses.
With the past year redefining the meaning of trust as we spend more of our daily lives in the virtual space than ever, leading independent identity provider Okta has conducted a study – The State of Digital Trust – to look at how well brands have done enough in the eyes of consumers to build trust, and what factors impacted the way consumers interacted with digital services.
Trust is hard-won but easily lost today, and although ethics and values are increasingly prized by shareholders, investors and boards, we found that when it comes to customers, getting the basics right is most important.
Okta’s Digital Trust survey found that 26% of Asian office workers, compared to 39% of global respondents, said service reliability was the criteria most likely to make them trust a digital brand—things like ensuring items arrive on time and in good condition.
Within the Asia region, a survey of 1,700 professionals found that:
Asians have a high level of trust in digital channels – only 10% of all Asian respondents don’t trust any digital channels to safely handle their data. This is in contrast with 19% of Americans – the most “untrusting” region.
Asians are more cautious than their global counterparts – 71% of Asian respondents are more cautious about providing personal information online amid the pandemic – almost double the global average (41%). Asian respondents feel they are most at risk from identity theft, with data breaches and password theft rounding out the top three concerns.
For brands, consumer loyalty is hard to gain and easy to lose, with brand awareness and reputation is closely linked to digital trust.
Specific to the Philippine market, the study found that respondents shared that the most trustworthy of all digital channels are websites like search engines and online databases used for work.
Organizations in the Philippines are also the most likely to have: implemented new security applications and technology (66%) and implemented more security training (39%).
Ultimately, the study found that businesses need to educate staff on security best practices and update legacy technologies that may be vulnerable to online threats to maintain employee efficiency and protect corporate data in a remote work environment. Most importantly, businesses must define the trust parameters by which employees, partners, and customers access sensitive data and systems.
Trust is fundamental to consumers, states the Okta study citing the events in 2020 led to trust becoming fundamental online, with 58% of Asian respondents saying they would be unlikely to purchase from a company they didn’t trust.
Getting the basics right is most important, the study stressed, with 26% saying reliable service (such as ensuring items arrive on time and in good condition) gives them the most trust in a digital brand. Security was the second most important criteria, with 23% telling us that having secure log-in options and other measures in place would help to nurture trust.
Brand reputation impacts online shopping: Asians take brand reputation seriously when it comes to where they spend their money online. If they have concerns about data breaches (45%), believe images misrepresent products (39%), don’t know if a website is legitimate (38%), or the website requests too much personal information (38%), many would have serious reservations about purchasing goods and services online.
Data ethics plays a key role: The top two reasons Asians would lose trust in a brand are 1) knowing they were intentionally misusing or selling personal data (34%) and 2) falling prey to a data breach (18%).
Websites used for work are most trusted: The most trustworthy of all digital channels are websites like search engines and online databases used for work, according to 25% of respondents from the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia and Hong Kong.
However, 47% of respondents from Singapore most trust government websites, while 10% of all Asian respondents said they don’t trust any digital channels to safely handle their data.
Consumer loyalty is hard to gain and easy to lose: Brands must work hard to retain trust, and effective cybersecurity is key. Half (50%) of Asian respondents said they have lost faith in a company due to a data breach or security event. Following an
event, 44% said they had changed their user settings, such as passwords and email addresses. A further 38% said they had permanently stopped using the company’s services and deleted the app from their device(s).
Office workers in Asia have become much more cautious online: With the rise of cyber threats over the past year, 71% of respondents say they have become more cautious about providing personal information about themselves online.
Working from home practices have also made approximately 60% of respondents more wary of phishing emails, data breaches and even AI-generated “deepfakes” used to spread false information.
Media coverage is key in disseminating information about online threats: Asians have increased caution online during the pandemic for the most part due to media coverage about scams and cybersecurity threats (41%).