Online user confidence growing

A significant minority of UK citizens would be happy to do away with their wallets in favour of biometric technologies such as...

A significant minority of UK citizens would be happy to do away with their wallets in favour of biometric technologies such as iris and fingerprint recognition.

According to online bank Egg's quarterly Embracing Technology report, 27% of the 2,000 people questioned would be happy to rely on biometric technology as a means of identifying themselves and the state of their finances.

The research, conducted in conjunction with opinion pollsters MORI, also found that the use of interactive technologies such as the Internet, WAP and digital television is on the increase, with 54% of the adult population - about 25 million people - using such technologies. This figure has increased by three million in the past three months.

Egg and MORI also discovered that confidence, and usage, is growing in online banking and financial services. There are now 5.5 million people banking online - a rise of 37.5% in three months. The survey concluded that there is a strong link between trust and transactional use of the Internet.

With 42% of the adult population, or 19 million people, now using the Internet for personal use, those people that have been online the longest are most likely to make online purchases and operate Internet-based bank accounts.

Some 56% of users that have been online for five years or more use the Internet for transactional purposes. That figure falls to 20% for users on one to three years, and just 11% for those who have been online for less than a year.

"Consumers have developed a liking for the value and flexibility that digital technology affords them, and are becoming increasingly confident in the possibilities of transacting online," said Mark Nancarrow, Egg's chief operating officer.

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