Online counterfeits ‘a growing worry for shoppers’

Almost eight in 10 UK consumers have security concerns about unknowingly purchasing counterfeit goods online, new research has found.

The study from brand security firm MarkMonitor also found that despite the continued rise of e-commerce, consumers were still not confident about the security provided by websites. Some 42 per cent of respondents said that they were worried about the safety of their personal and financial details when it came to internet transactions.

The results of the survey revealed that the percentage of people concerned about unintentionally purchasing counterfeit items is increasing – similar research from MarkMonitor in 2015 found that 64 per cent were anxious about being sold fake goods.

The latest poll also indicated that this is beginning to have a serious negative impact on genuine brands. Almost three quarters of respondents to the latest survey who unknowingly bought counterfeit goods had a more negative perception of the genuine brand as a result, with 12 per cent saying that they would never purchase from that brand again.

Mark Frost, CEO of MarkMonitor, said: “Despite e-commerce being more popular than ever, this research indicates that the large majority of businesses are not doing enough to safeguard their customers and alleviate the concerns they have. In fact, according to our research, a huge 85 per cent of consumers believe that brands should be doing more to protect them, particularly when it comes to the purchase of counterfeit goods.

“These findings should really be a warning sign to all businesses against complacency over cyber security,” he added. “Just because the number of consumers buying goods online keeps rising, this does not mean that businesses should sit back and assume that all consumers feel comfortable doing so.”

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