Three out of four corporates and international banks (73 per cent) do not regard security as a barrier to using internet-based channels for financial transactions and reporting, according to a new online poll conducted by HSBC and GTNews. Only 22 per cent of corporates and 31 per cent of banks said that security concerns were preventing them from executing and reporting financial transactions via the internet. Of the 203 treasury and finance professionals polled in August 2003, those based in Asia-Pacific were most concerned about the security of internet-based services. Some 42 per cent of respondents in this region viewed security concerns as an obstacle to using internet-based channels, compared with 26 per cent of respondents from Europe and just 14 per cent of those from North America. A group treasurer at a UK corporation commented: ‘We do not have a concern [transacting over the internet]. We trade FX, deposit funds, collect balances and statements on the internet. We wait for our banks to enable us to make our payments this way.’ Julian Soper, Head of e-Commerce, HSBC Corporate, Investment Banking and Markets, said: ‘It is encouraging to see the increasing comfort levels for online banking amongst corporates and banks. While the need for robust security remains vital, greater acceptance of the internet as a channel for transactions and reporting will help fuel its growth and evolution.’
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