Consumers Believe Online Security Threats Outpace Protection Technologies

A new Daon survey shows 92 percent of consumers believe cybersecurity threats will continue to outpace protection technology, with 91 percent willing to take extra security measures to prove their identity on an ongoing basis to protect their information and accounts.

These and other findings in the report reveal consumers acknowledge a high-risk environment when conducting different aspects of their lives online. These attitudes signal an emergence of “Zero Trust Consumers.”

The report, The Era of the Zero Trust Consumer, is based on a survey of more than 2,000 U.S. and more than 1,000 U.K. consumers conducted in October. It shows consumers may be accepting the reality of ongoing cybersecurity threats in the same way that businesses are adopting a Zero Trust Architecture. In the enterprise, a Zero Trust Architecture acknowledges constant and ever-changing cybersecurity risks and requires user identity, in and outside organizations, to be authenticated and continuously verified before the user is given access to networks, applications, or data.

“As online breaches, hacks, and fraud targeting businesses, governments and consumers continue to escalate both in frequency and sophistication, consumers are showing a growing awareness of these threats and a determination to do what is necessary to secure their accounts and information,” said Tom Grissen, chief executive officer at Daon, a digital identity trust company. “This emerging state of consumer awareness is what we’re calling ‘Zero Trust Consumers.’ The lack of trust is primarily about cybercriminals, but it doesn’t need to apply to businesses. Businesses that deploy advanced technology to prove and continually authenticate identities at every trust point across the customer lifecycle will ensure a trust relationship with their customers.”

Despite industry and consumer pressure to move beyond vulnerable passwords, the report shows that passwords persist as the industry standard, with 68 percent of consumers saying they are their most used and least trusted security measure. The findings show consumers are ready to embrace stronger security measures and expect the businesses they hold accounts with to meet them halfway in securing their identities.

This expectation holds especially true for their digital financial accounts, where increasing reliance on financial technology has left consumers concerned for the safety of financial information and money – 93 percent expect stronger security measures, but passwords with one-time codes and simple passwords are still the most used methods of protecting this vital information.

Nearly half (48 percent) of respondents have experienced a breach or hack of an online account in the past five years, and 44 percent have experienced financial fraud, leading to a greater understanding of the reality of security threats and a strong willingness to embrace more advanced, passwordless technology. Eighty-one percent say they would be willing to use facial or voice recognition when accessing accounts to better ensure security.

The full report is available for download here. Learn more at