British people are annoyed by 'complicated' passwords and internet security measures, poll claims

Six out of ten people are fed up of passwords using a mix of numbers, symbols and capital letters

Rob Knight
Tuesday 03 July 2018 15:54 BST

British people are fed up with ‘overly complicated’ internet and phone security measures, a study has found.

More than three quarters of 2,000 UK adults polled by researchers do not see the point of what they believe are 'unnecessary' procedures.

Six out of ten are annoyed by the need for elaborate passwords featuring a mix of numbers, symbols and capital letters.

Around half are sick of having to answer ‘endless’ security questions whenever they call customer service departments.

Forty-three per cent are fed-up with the faff of two-step verification and seven in 10 are frustrated by Captcha codes – as they tend to feature illegible words.

Commissioned by global analytics company FICO, the research also found almost two thirds think there are simply too many security measures nowadays.

Gabriel Hopkins, a vice president for fraud solutions at FICO, said: “Consumers may be happy their bank is protecting them from fraud, but they’re not happy about the inconvenience this causes.

“More than ever, banks need to figure out how to keep fraud management effective without negatively impacting customer experience.

“This is challenging in an online, on-demand world, but essential if banks are to hold their own against fintechs.”

Having to remember password recovery email addresses is an irritation for 51 per cent – and similarly six in 10 find it annoying when email systems log them out randomly as a security measure.

Forty-two per cent even consider airport security to be an inconvenience and 34 per cent regard mobile phone PINs as a hassle.

Seven in 10 said they struggle to keep track of all their passwords.

Those polled had 32 different online accounts on average – including email accounts, shopping accounts, social media accounts, bank accounts and more.

In fact, the security measures associated with banking appear to be particularly frustrating to some of those polled – especially when it comes to opening a new account online.

Almost one quarter would give up opening an account completely - or open an account with an entirely different provider instead - if they were forced to jump through too many hoops - such as post documents or travel to a branch in person.

Ten per cent think you should be able to open an account ‘immediately’ and 14 per cent believe the entire process should take less than an hour.

But regardless of how long it should take, 62 per cent are confident their bank carries out enough checks to verify account holder’s identities and prevent fraud.

And seven in 10 trust their bank to protect their account from criminal activity – such as fraud.

Worryingly, 46 per cent have been victims of banking fraud – although around two thirds were satisfied with how their bank dealt with it.

Gabriel Hopkins added: “Good management of security and fraud has become a competitive advantage for banks.

“Now the challenge is to automate more interactions and improve communications to make sure that customers don’t abandon purchases or move to other payment channels that promise an easier transaction.”

Are you security savvy? Do you know how to stay safe online? Take this quiz to find out.

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