Based on a recent survey of 2,000 consumers, the Council of Marketing Directors (CMO) and the Business Performance Innovation (BPI) network are calling on companies to unify and modernize identity authentication processes to avoid a massive exodus of customers.
The survey seems to indicate a common frustration with traditional login systems based on passwords and anti-bot measures such as CAPTCHA, to the point that consumers are abandoning online retailers who make the process too tedious or do not provide adequate security.
Identity authentication survey reveals distaste for passwords, preference for biometrics
The survey is part of a larger campaign launched in September called ‘Unify How You Verify’, in which CMO and BPI partnered with biometric-based digital integration platform Daon to research consumer attitudes and business leaders and find ways to improve the customer experience at the end of the identity authentication process.
The project stems from a survey carried out during the Covid-19 pandemic which indicates that 73% of consumers will stop and wonder why they continue to do business with an entity online when they reach a point of frustration with verification identity, and that standard login systems frequently cause such frustration.
This current investigation considers “customer defection” due to annoying identity authentication policies as a very real possibility in the immediate future. He also cites the massive spikes in cybercrime seen during the pandemic period, with credential theft being one of the main factors.
The main findings are that 85% of consumers will have a negative opinion of a business if they have a problem with identity authentication; 53% say this has a “major” or “significant” impact on their perception of the company. 81% express a preference for doing business with companies that make identity authentication “simple and secure”. And one of the most worrying numbers for online retailers and service providers is that 61% say they gave up in the middle of a transaction due to frustration with some aspect of identity authentication.
What are these consumers most frustrated with? The survey suggests that just over half are fed up with having to track too many passwords. While this cannot be placed at the feet of an individual department or website, standard safety hygiene advice now is to have a unique password for each connection. However, several different surveys conducted since the start of 2020 suggest that people now have an average of 80-100 accounts for which they need unique passwords.
43% also express frustration with the need to recreate passwords at certain intervals, another piece of conventional wisdom in safety hygiene. And 33% become frustrated when an account creation process tells them that the password is not strong enough and that they need to add additional elements and / or lengthen it.
Consumers’ patience does not appear to increase as the time spent online and the number of online purchases have increased since 2020. Survey reveals that consumers expect identity authentication to fail. take no more than 15 seconds. Any longer than that and they start to peel off and move on to other services.
The impact of cybercrime
Most forms of cybercrime increased during the pandemic period, but customer awareness of privacy and security issues was already increasing dramatically even before masses of people were forced to work, go to school and to shop at home by security considerations of Covid-19.
People are asked to provide a variety of sensitive personal information to open accounts, and they are increasingly concerned about this information being leaked during a data breach. Organizations are also increasingly subject to new regulations regarding the handling of all this information, such as the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act.
There are several potential answers to this problem, including increased encryption of sensitive data, but given the goal of the project, the one this report naturally lands on is the use of biometrics in identity authentication to replace a much of this information stored. Here, the study seems to find support among the executive ranks, with 44% of them seeing biometrics as a simpler solution to identity authentication and 34% being receptive to the idea as long as it can be demonstrated to be safe. Only 10% of respondents had a strong preference for passwords.
Whatever the future, the study tends to see this as something new and emerging that ends up providing a unified identity authentication experience. He does not consider the current (and more limited) models of “federated identity authentication” offered by major technology platforms such as Google and Facebook to be feasible in a universal application; banks have already categorically rejected these forms of connection as not being sufficiently secure