ABA: National Survey Shows Americans Trust Banks Most to Keep Their Information Safe

U.S. adults trust banks more than any other entity – including healthcare providers, non-bank payment providers and the government – to keep their information secure and private, according to a new survey conducted by Morning Consult on behalf of the American Bankers Association. In addition, all age groups surveyed (Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X and Baby Boomers) trust banks the most to protect their information.

The survey, conducted in early October, also found that by a greater than 3 to 1 margin, U.S. adults prefer their banking services to be delivered by a bank versus a technology company. In all, 56% of U.S. adults say they prefer a bank to provide their financial services versus just 17% who prefer their banking services to be provided by a technology company with a financial services division. Three-quarters of Americans care whether the company that handles their finances is regulated like a bank, while only 9% said they don’t care. A majority in every age group surveyed shared that view. Additionally, 74% of consumers value FDIC insurance that guarantees the safety of their money “a lot” or “some,” and a plurality identified it as their top priority when deciding where to deposit their money.

“This survey reinforces the trust consumers have in America’s banks to keep their money safe and to provide the financial services and convenience they want and need,” said Rob Nichols, ABA president and CEO. “It’s encouraging to see that adults across generations appreciate the commitment America’s banks have made to protecting customer information.”

ABA also released an accompanying infographic highlighting the survey results. The data released today are the latest in a series of results gauging consumers’ preferences and opinions regarding banks and their services. Last week’s data revealed that Americans are highly satisfied with their bank and the industry’s response to COVID-19. The full results for today’s survey questions are as follows:

When asked “Of the following, who do you trust most to keep your personal information secure and private?” consumers provided the following answers:

  • Banks – 49%
  • Healthcare providers – 27%
  • Non-bank payment providers (such as Apple Pay, Venmo, PayPal) – 12%
  • The government – 9%
  • Major retailers – 1%
  • Telecom companies (such as Sprint, Verizon, AT&T) – 1%

All age groups trust banks more than any other entity:

  • Gen Z (1992-2012) – 57%
  • Millennials (1981-1996) – 43%
  • Gen X (1965-1980) – 49%
  • Baby Boomers (1946-1964) – 50%

When asked “Which of the following comes closest to your view, even if none is exactly right?” consumers provided the following responses:

  • I want my banking services to be through a traditional financial company such as a bank – 56%
  • I want my banking services to be through a technology company with a financial services division – 17%
  • I don’t care which type of company I receive my banking services from – 14%
  • Don’t know/no opinion – 14%

When asked “Which of the following comes closest to your view even if neither is exactly right?” consumers provided the following responses:

  • I care if the company I handle my finances with is regulated like a bank – 74%
  • I don’t care if the company I handle my finances with is regulated like a bank – 9%
  • Don’t know/no opinion – 17%

A majority in every age group wants the company handling their finances to be regulated like a bank:

  • Gen Z (1992-2012) – 61%
  • Millennials (1981-1996) – 68%
  • Gen X (1965-1980) – 74%
  • Baby Boomers (1946-1964) – 82%

When asked “To what extent do you value the protection of an FDIC-insured deposit account (savings account, checking account, CD, etc.) that insures your money up to $250,000 per depositor, per bank?” respondents provided the following responses:

  • A lot – 50%
  • Some – 24%
  • Not much – 6%
  • Not at all – 2%
  • Don’t know/no opinion – 19%

When asked “Please rank the following in terms of ’priority’ when deciding in which account to deposit your money, where ’1’ represents the highest priority when selecting an account to deposit your money and ’4’ represents the lowest priority when selecting an account to deposit your money,” consumers provided the following answers for ‘1’ (the highest priority):

  • FDIC insurance that guarantees the safety of my money – 39%
  • The highest interest rate on my deposits – 23%
  • The best in-person customer service – 21%
  • The best mobile customer experience/app in the market – 12%

About the Survey
This poll was conducted by Morning Consult on behalf of the American Bankers Association from October 1-2, 2020, among a national sample of 2,200 adults. The interviews were conducted online and the data were weighted to approximate a target sample of adults based on age, race/ethnicity, gender, educational attainment, and region. Results from the full survey have a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.

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