Just 5% of consumers highly trust tech companies

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Just 5% of consumers highly trust tech companies Duncan is an award-winning technology industry analyst, specialising in cloud computing, blockchain, martech and edge computing.

As high-profile biometric breaches and violations make headlines, consumer comfort levels in sharing biometrics have declined significantly.

According to GetApp’s 2024 Biometric Technologies Survey of 1,000 consumers, the number of individuals who highly trust tech companies to safeguard biometric data has absolutely plummeted, falling from 28% in 2022 to a mere 5% in 2024.

This is contrary to the immediate post-pandemic years when biometric technologies peaked in popularity as a touchless alternative in retail settings and for identity confirmation. However, GetApp’s research indicates a significant reversal from the past two years.

Consumer comfort levels have dropped considerably when sharing:

  • Fingerprints (from 63% in 2022 to 50% in 2024)
  • Face scans (from 44% in 2022 to 33% in 2024)
  • Voice scans (from 34% in 2022 to 20% in 2024)

This discomfort is fueled by various security concerns regarding data breaches, misuse of data, identity theft, and reduced privacy.

Beyond security concerns, 63% of consumers lack faith in the accuracy of biometric technology, compared to just 38% in 2022. One likely reason is a recent surge in cases of facial recognition misidentification that have disproportionately impacted people of color and women. Though there is support for facial recognition in practical security applications, such as passport control and device log-in, 82% of consumers feel it should be avoided if found to be biased. Even in retail scenarios, consumer trust in using facial recognition has fallen to only 25%—a drop of nearly 50% from 2022.

A big push against biometric data sharing coincides with the explosion of generative AI into public consciousness in 2023. GetApp research reveals that 85% of consumers are concerned about sharing personal data with generative AI tools, and almost half (49%) have decided against using these tools because they did not trust them with their personal information.

Biometrics are not just facing criticism from consumers but are also under regulatory scrutiny by government organizations. Six U.S. states already have biometric-specific laws, and a dozen others have pending legislation. These laws can impose serious financial liabilities on companies collecting biometric data; for example, Illinois’ BIPA includes a private right of action for victims, often leading to heavy fines. Other comprehensive privacy laws, such as California’s CCPA/CPRA and Europe’s GDPR, include biometrics as protected data.

“Businesses must take a deliberate approach in implementing biometric technology as it currently faces both public and regulatory scrutiny,” says Zach Capers, manager of ResearchLab and senior security analyst at GetApp. “To mitigate legal, reputational, and financial risks, ensure that biometric data is captured with consent and stored securely in compliance with privacy regulations.”

Read the full report for more insights on how businesses can deploy biometric technology while adhering to privacy concerns and compliance with emerging regulations.

Interested in hearing leading global brands discuss subjects like this in person? Find out more about Digital Marketing World Forum (#DMWF) Europe, London, North America, and Singapore.

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