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Americans are more worried than Europeans about identity theft and online fraud.

Overall transactions are still increasing and mid-price purchases are the most popular, but spending in some areas is shrinking.

Research carried out in Germany, France, the UK and US found that almost half US consumers have little or no confidence that their private information is adequately protected. The government, industry alliances setting security standards, hardware and software companies, ISPs and credit checking agencies were all mentioned.

Online spending is also falling in some areas, which researchers suggest could be linked to increasing worries about security. Average monthly online spending in September was €153 with the UK in top slot with €231 and US spending least at €129.

Although overall transactions are increasing 16 per cent of those questioned in theUS are spending less and 13 per cent of Brits also cutting spending. RSA believes this may be linked to increased awareness of identity theft. In the US nine out of ten consumers are aware of identity theft while in France and Germany one in three is not aware of it. Less than half of respondents had heard of phishing.

The survey was carried out by Momentum Research and spoke to 603 consumers with one or more active online accounts.

More details here. ®

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