Nine out of ten (87 per cent) cybersecurity experts believe that mobile payment data breaches will grow in the next 12 months, but 42 per cent have used this payment method this year, according to a survey by cybersecurity association ISACA.
The study, entitled The 2015 Mobile Security Study, shows that despite the consensus about the risks, just under half of experts believe that the benefits outweigh them.
Just under a quarter (23 per cent) believe that mobile payments are secure in keeping personal information safe, whilst nearly half(47 per cent) say mobile payments are not secure.
Cash most secure
Out of all the payment methods, experts still trust cash, with 89 per cent saying it is the most secure payment method. However, despite this strong trust, only 9 per cent prefer to use it – again suggesting that security is not the most important factor when it comes to choosing payment methods.
“Mobile payments represent the latest frontier for the choice we make to balance security and privacy risk and convenience,” said John Pironti, risk advisor with ISACA and president of IP Architects.
Pironti continued to say fear of identity theft is not slowing down adoption and that is not an issue as long as the risk is properly managed by effective security measures.
The survey asked respondents to rank major vulnerabilities associated with mobile payments and over a quarter (26 per cent) said that public WiFi was number one. The loss or theft of a mobile device was second with 21 per cent. Surprisingly, weak passwords came in fourth with only 13 per cent saying it was a major vulnerability.
Preventing data breaches
The most effective way to make mobile payments more secure is to use a two-factor process to authenticate their identity (66 per cent), and requiring short-term authentication codes (18 per cent). Less popular was installing phone-based security apps (9 per cent).
“People using mobile payments need to educate themselves so they are making informed choices. You need to know your options, choose an acceptable level of risk, and put a value on your personal information,” said Christos Dimitriadis, Ph.D., international president of ISACA and group director of information security for INTRALOT.
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