SMBs should embrace digital payments: Kaspersky

  • Two third say SMBs should use digital payments
  • Malaysians strongly in favor of SMB’s adoption

SMBs should embrace digital payments: KasperskyMore than half of e-finance users (67%) in Southeast Asia (SEA) believe that small and medium businesses (SMBs) should begin using digital payments for financial transactions, according to a study conducted by Kaspersky

According to the cybersecurity company, among the countries in SEA, consumers in Malaysia (72%) strongly favored the SMB’s adoption of digital payment systems, followed by Singapore (68%) and the Philippines (68%).

This is one of the key findings of a study on 1,618 people conducted by Kaspersky in a bid to identify the attitude and challenges of digital payment users in the region.

It added that the survey showed an overall belief (64%) among the respondents that mobile wallets can even positively boost businesses by increasing their earnings, with being the most confident with this idea (71%) followed by Malaysia (68%) and Vietnam (64%).

The study showed that the frequently used forms of digital payment among SEA consumers are:

  • Mobile payment apps (58%);
  • Internet banking via mobile app (53%);
  • Debit card (36%);
  • Credit card (33%); and
  • Internet banking via browser (31%)

Additionally, the report indicated that nearly three in five (59%) of respondents said that they would shop more at stores that accept digital payments.

Malaysian consumers (70%) are the most inclined to do so followed by Vietnam (63%) and the Philippines (59%), it said.

For the respondents across the region, Kaspersky said their top three reasons for being familiar and comfortable around these technologies are its convenience, ease of access and privacy. 

The company also noted that interestingly, users here are also aware of the issues that hamper SMBs in embracing this technology, with more than a quarter (27%) of the total respondents admitting that local businesses are not ready to use digital payments yet because of Internet issues and lack of devices.

This view is highest in the Philippines (31%), followed closely by Vietnam (30%), Indonesia (29%) and Thailand (28%).

More developed countries in the region logged lower, Malaysia (21%) and Singapore (20%), Kaspersky said.

However, it’s a different matter when an e-commerce provider or seller is subjected to a cyber attack, it added.

It noted that the survey showed that the confidence of consumers to shop at stores that suffered data breaches dropped by 42% in general.

Yeo Siang Tiong, general manager for Southeast Asia at Kaspersky said it is worthy to note that while consumers are embracing the digital lifestyle and trusting these tools that make their financial transactions smooth and fast, they are also starting to gain an awareness of the dangers and risks of cyber threats in their personal lives.

“To put things in perspective, the cost of data breaches in SMBs rises by 54% but with early breach detection, the average losses would go 17% lower.

“The SMBs are now in a position to speed up their digital transformation, therefore, radical changes to the demands and expectations of consumers can no longer be ignored or else, they might decide to bring their business elsewhere.

“I would venture to advise SMBs right now to act and ride the wave, so to speak,” he said.


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