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Security Concerns Hinder Mobile Banking in Malaysia

Three in four mobile users are worried about security

November 10, 2016 | Mobile | Financial Services

Mobile banking is not the most popular mobile activity in Malaysia, and according to March research, that’s likely because people still mistrust the channel.

Reasons that Mobile Device Owners in Malaysia Are Not Likely to Conduct Mobile Banking Activities, March 2016 (% of respondents)

About three in 10 mobile device owners in Malaysia told Nielsen in March 2016 that they prefer to visit physical banks rather than conduct banking activities on their mobile phone. And security was by far the biggest reason: Nearly three-quarters of mobile device owners .

But there are technical reasons for not banking via mobile as well: About 30% cited their device’s small screen as a reason they weren’t likely to bank on it, and 15% also pointed out that the lack of stable internet connection was a problem.

And in fact, for mobile device owners in Malaysia, mobile banking—whatever the reason—is often not a priority.

Top 20 Mobile Activities Conducted by Mobile Device Owners in Malaysia, March 2016 (% of repsondents)

Of the top 20 mobile activities conducted by mobile device owners in Malaysia, using a banking or insurance app ranked 14th. Of course, it is noteworthy that 32% of respondents said they did do such an activity—that’s a third of those surveyed, after all—and in fact, 53% said they checked an account balance or recent transaction, and 42% said they transferred money between bank accounts.

So it seems that while mobile banking has a reputation for a lack of security or privacy among some owners in Malaysia, many are still doing it.

eMarketer estimates that this year, there will be 22.4 million mobile phone users in Malaysia, including 15.3 million smartphone users—which translates to just under half the population. By 2020, 58.8% of people of all ages in Malaysia will own and use a smartphone on a monthly basis.

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