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80% of consumers worry about how their personal data is mined and used, with little understanding of what they consent to

Consumers pessimistic about spending

80% of UK shoppers are concerned about how their personal data is mined and used online, with social media seen as the biggest culprit for misuse and online retail a concern for around a third of shoppers.

Research by from highlights just how heightened consumer awareness has become to online privacy – a trend ecommerce retailers need to embrace if they’re to adapt to new consumer preferences.

More than two-thirds (67%) of consumers surveyed said they had actually left a site due to concerns about how their data might be used. Additionally, 8 out of 10 (83%) said they had concerns about their data being tracked, captured and sold on to advertisers when accepting a website’s consent banner and privacy policy.

The top 5 places online where consumers felt their data was at most risk was cover social media (72%); browsing the web (51%); instant messaging apps (39%); ecommerce websites (33%); and news sites (21%)

Jonathan Newman, CEO at explains “It is vital that all retailers, no matter their size, provide consumers with an online shopping experience that they can trust and enjoy. What this study shows is the high value that consumers place on their personal data. We want to empower retailers to not only provide enhanced online shopping experiences that can compete with big brands, but to also create and cultivate consumer trust and loyalty through a non intrusive and privacy-first approach.”

The research also highlights the significant challenges that lie ahead and importance for companies and retailers to effectively communicate their data privacy practices. More than half of consumers (52%) admitted they don’t understand what they are agreeing to when clicking on consent banners online and almost three quarters (74%) find the privacy policies themselves hard to understand.

This not only has an impact on the trust consumers place in brands to handle their data with care, but diminishes the customer experience when online. Almost 90% of consumers (88%) find consent banners annoying and two-thirds (68%) have left a website due to difficulty with navigating these banners.

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