UAE consumers are increasingly relying on technology and have a growing desire to be connected, a global study conducted by KPMG has revealed.
KPMG's report analysed factors driving consumer behaviour and choices in the UAE—and how these could change as the customer of tomorrow emerges. It surveyed 25,000 global consumers in the UK, US, UAE, France, Canada, China and India.
The research found that 67% of UAE consumers see value in harnessing the power of technology, with around 97% receiving their news online and 93% on social media.
According to the UAE edition of KPMG International's study, titled Me, My Life, My Wallet, almost half of all the UAE consumers interviewed were impressed with how much a smartphone could help them manage their schedules.
Despite recent global data breaches, 78% of UAE consumers feel comfortable sharing their data with retailers and other institutions, but they would be more likely to do so if they saw tangible value.
When asked about trading their data for personalization or better deals, UAE consumers were midway between the privacy-conscious Europeans and the more carefree consumers of China or India, with 22% saying they would not trade their data at all.
Globally, more than half of consumers expressed anxiety about identity theft, including the hacking of financial, medical or other personal information online.
Around 46% were concerned about the theft of credit card details when shopping online; and 38% were concerned about the unauthorized tracking of their online habits by companies, governments and criminals.
The study found that consumers are more likely to trust companies with data that is directly relevant to the service they are providing.
In the UAE, sectors that enjoyed the highest level of trust among consumers were healthcare (63%), banking (52%), retail (51%) and technology (38%), while the least trusted was advertising at 15%.
“We believe that there is a tremendous need to understand consumers’ expectations, especially regarding their data, and it is imperative that organizations do not take this for granted in the future," said Farhan Syed, Partner, Digital and Innovation at KPMG Lower Gulf.