More than half (54%) of over-55s have been using more online services since the coronavirus pandemic started, a survey has found.
Nearly a fifth (17%) in this age group have signed up to at least three new online entertainment, socialising or shopping services, Santander found.
Common reasons for the increased use of online services among over-55s included avoiding having to go out, for their own personal safety, saving time and joining in with what friends and family are doing.
However, 16% of over-55s said they would not be using their bank’s digital services to manage their money.
Among over-55s who did not bank online, 64% said they had concerns over security, and the same proportion (64%) also said they had not got round to using the service.
It's great to see that over 55s are trying out new digital services to help them overcome some of the challenges created by coronavirusChris Ainsley, head of fraud strategy, Santander UK
Santander said its own data suggests some over-55s have been less inclined than other age groups to turn more to digital banking during the pandemic.
But the bank’s online chat service, which allows customers to carry out a range of account specific transactions, such as balance inquiries and requesting a replacement card, has seen a significant increase in usage since the pandemic began, with over-55s accounting for more than a quarter (27%) of users in March.
Chris Ainsley, head of fraud strategy, Santander UK said: “It’s great to see that over-55s are trying out new digital services to help them overcome some of the challenges created by coronavirus and their use of our online chat service is really welcome.
“For those who feel confident and comfortable after experimenting with other online services, then now is a perfect time to put digital banking to the test.”
He added: “For those who don’t have access to the internet or who simply aren’t comfortable managing their money online, then we’re always happy to help over our phone lines or once it’s safe to do so again, in person in branch.”
Some 2,000 people were surveyed across the UK between April 14 and 16.
Here are Mr Ainsley’s tips for people to stay safe while banking digitally:
– Keep your log-in details safe at all times. Avoid writing them down and do not share them with anyone.
– Never share your one time passcode (OTP) with anyone, not even bank staff.
– Never let a cold caller talk you into giving them access to your device or downloading software.
– Do not be lulled into entering your online banking details after clicking a link in an email or text message. If you are logging in to online banking, type the full address into your web browser.
– Install the latest security updates to your system software as they become available.
– If you are using public WiFi make sure you fully log out of online and sign out of the mobile app once you are done.