Maintel: Privacy Fears Prevent Use of Virtual Assistants
Young people are avoiding Virtual Assistants for customer service
Virtual assistants and speech-based technology have seen a massive surge in adoption in recent years. However, there’s still some work to be done before consumers can rely on virtual assistants to assist with things like purchasing, banking, and handling service issues. According to research revealed by leading communications brand, Maintel, security, and privacy are major stumbling blocks for virtual assistant technology.
Over a third of 18-24-year-olds use voice assistants like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant to make complaints with brands. However, high-profile data breaches are leaving many young people concerned. Around 41% of 18-24-year-olds and 39% of 25-34-year-olds are wary of using virtual assistants to liaise with brands. These customers are worried that use virtual assistants may open the door to a risk of hacking.
Privacy and Security Features
The concerns surrounding the use of virtual assistants for customer service are even more significant when it comes to sharing private information via virtual assistants. For instance, 32% of 18-24 year old’s say that they wouldn’t feel comfortable transferring money using a smart device. Additionally, 41% of 18-34-year-olds worry that their devices are always listening to them.
Maintel’s study into the evolving virtual assistant landscape found that over half of respondents wouldn’t use a virtual assistant to contact a company. Additionally, around 31% of 18-24-year-olds are worried that someone could overhear them giving their information when using a smart speaker.
Over half of people aged between 18 and 24 also said that they wouldn’t feel comfortable using their voice assistants to pay for a bill. Additionally, almost half of all 35-44-year-olds revealed that they would feel uncomfortable complaining to a bank via a voice assistant.
The Rise of Voice Assistants
Despite an increase in the number of voice-enabled tools in the current market, there’s a clear feeling of distrust and reluctance among consumers of all ages in the UK towards virtual voice platforms. Around 59% of consumers don’t’ own any smart device with virtual assistant access. Additionally, 46% of people said that they had no intention to use the devices to contact a customer service team.
Commenting on the results of the study, the CTO of Maintel, Rufus Grig, said that although many young people are happy to be the early adopters of new technology, they’re still concerned about what it means to use virtual assistants in their day-to-day lives. Customers of all ages are worried about the implications of using connected devices, and this reluctance is leading to problems with the adoption of new technology. While the introduction of things like GDPR has changed the way that companies collect data, companies will still need to work hard to earn the trust of their audience in the digital age.