Aimed to understand consumers’ expectations of trust and their experiences with digital services and provide tangible insights to organisations to help bridge the gap by earning and sustaining the trust of consumers in the digital world, a joint study by Microsoft and conducted by IDC Asia/Pacific, found that only two out of five (41 per cent) of consumers in India trust organisations offering digital services to protect their personal data.
The study, Understanding Consumer Trust in Digital Services in Asia Pacific, found that establishing a trusted platform needs to be a priority in organisations’ strategy for digital services. It uncovered that close to half of the consumers (46 per cent) in India have had their trust compromised when using digital services. More than half (51 per cent) of the respondents indicated that they would switch to another organisation while 32 per cent would reduce the usage of the digital service.
Nearly one out of three (32 per cent) of consumers would stop using the digital service altogether. Moreover, only seven per cent of consumers prefer to transact with an organisation that offers a cheaper but less trusted digital platform. Close to 73 per cent consumers highlighted that they would recommend a trusted digital service to others even if the cost is higher.
The joint study was conducted among 6,400 consumers across 14 markets and surveyed 459 consumers in India asking respondents to provide their opinions on the five elements of trust jointly defined by IDC and Microsoft – namely privacy, security, reliability, ethics, and compliance– when using digital services of which specifically, security (86 per cent), privacy (85 per cent) and compliance (82 per cent) emerged as the top three most important elements for the Indian consumers.
‘The upside for organisations with a trusted digital platform is tremendous as India is one of the largest and fastest growing digital services markets in Asia Pacific where almost all of the transactions and interactions here would be digital in the near future,” said Keshav Dhakad, Group Head & Assistant General Counsel - Corporate, External & Legal Affairs (CELA), Microsoft India.
However, despite consumers’ increasing dependence on digital services, Dhakad believes that there is still a considerable trust gap that needs to be addressed. Most consumers still do not perceive organisations to be trusted data stewards. Microsoft believes that businesses need to do a lot more to understand what drives consumer trust and focus on how they can build trust and make it a key competitive advantage for their digital services.
Consumers in India feel that technology companies (46 per cent) followed by governments (34 per cent) should be responsible for building trust, indicating the need for a stronger partnership between the private and public sector. When it comes to fostering trust in AI technologies, consumers feel that the technology companies (43 per cent) and government (39 per cent) should take the lead in ensuring AI is used in a trusted manner.