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Poles Struggle with Cybersecurity Despite Widespread Online Banking: Financial Literacy Survey

SECURITYPoles Struggle with Cybersecurity Despite Widespread Online Banking: Financial Literacy Survey

47 percent of Poles state that cyber security is the field within the realm of finance where they most lack knowledge, according to the report “The Level of Financial Awareness of Poles 2024” commissioned by the Warsaw Institute of Banking and the GPW Foundation. Despite online banking being a standard practice, only 0.5 percent of the respondents correctly answered questions relating to various aspects of security systems. However, there are areas in which our knowledge is growing – including cashless transactions, for example.

Only one in four Poles positively rates their financial knowledge. It turns out that the area which presents us the most problems is cyber security. 47 percent of people in Poland admit to lacking sufficient knowledge in this area. Investment, in the broad sense, was identified as the second most difficult area, where 32 percent of the respondents admitted to possessing gaps in their knowledge.

These are issues which should be a special concern for public institutions, as well as for the financial sector. There should be an emphasis placed on these topics in all communications with clients, says Michał Polak, the vice-president of the Warsaw Institute of Banking Foundation to Newseria Business Information Agency.

In the study of “The Level of Financial Awareness of Poles 2024”, it is shown that we also have a serious problem with understanding the tax system. One in four (25 percent) admit to lacking knowledge in this field, with 22 percent wishing to improve their knowledge in this field.

When asked about safe usage of online banking, the vast majority of respondents could correctly answer questions regarding providing login and password information over the phone to a bank consultant, or reading entire SMS content regarding authorization codes from banks. Respondents, on average, answered less than four out of seven questions correctly. Less than 0.5 percent of respondents were able to correctly answer all of the questions.

37 percent of respondents declared that they read contracts with financial institutions thoroughly with 46 percent making the effort but not always understanding all of the provisions. 10 percent only check the basic provisions and personal data for accuracy.

Respondents emphasize that improving their economic knowledge mainly contributes to better savings outcomes (39 percent), better budget management (37 percent) and improved investment results (25 percent) – the latter often pointed out mostly by residents of the largest cities and those with higher education. Lack of knowledge is one of the most significant factors preventing Poles from investing in the stock market – 45 percent of respondents indicated this.

What is interesting, is the indication of sources of economic knowledge. For 59 percent of the respondents, it’s blogs and internet portals, for 22 percent – podcasts and video materials on the internet. 36 percent of respondents indicated mainstream media, and 34 percent – banks and other financial institutions as their source. Only 22 percent rely on information from public institutions.

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