A study by Visa, the leading global payments technology company, showed that the pandemic has sped up the growth of virtual and mobile banking services in Hong Kong but security continues to be a concern.
One in two Hong Kongers have already opened an account with a virtual bank because of the rewards with account opening (58 percent), better interest rates for savings (55%), and quick and easy account opening procedures (36%).
The Visa Consumer Payment Attitudes Study 2021 examined the preferences and emerging trends of consumers in Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan.
The study also showed that 4 out of 10 consumers in Hong Kong used more mobile banking services from their primary banks than in the pre-COVID period.
The same level of growth is expected one year from now on. However, traditional banks continue to have the upper hand, mainly due to security concerns.
Around 80 percent of Hong Kongers survey said they will use traditional banks as their main bank; 59 percent feel their money is safe in the traditional banks and 56 percent find traditional banks reliable for transacting.
Maaike Steinebach, General Manager, Visa Hong Kong and Macau, said the pandemic has led to a big shift in consumer behavior as digital becomes more integral to everyday life.
However, Steinebach said it is of crucial importance for the industry to balance convenience, speed, and user experience with robust privacy and security protection.
The majority from Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan share the same thought of data sharing posing more risks than benefits. They are hesitant to offer their personal data for monetization.
In Hong Kong, people are worried about monetary loss due to unlawful acts (56 percent), malicious intentions of hacking and obtaining information (55 percent), and unauthorized information sharing with third parties (53 percent).
In contrast, consumers feel safer using mobile phone payments, yet security concerns still prevail.