Cryptocurrency Used by 13% of Online Shoppers, Kaspersky Survey Finds

Although accounting for only a fraction of electronic payments, cryptocurrency is gaining in popularity, according to the results of a recent Kaspersky survey.

When it comes to payment methods, 13% of online shoppers have used cryptocurrency, a survey by Kaspersky Labs reveals. Moreover, despite the bear market in the past year, the net adoption of digital assets, including Bitcoin (BTC), has grown by 700% since 2013.

The survey explored the online shopping habits of 12,000 customers in 22 different countries.

Cryptocurrency remains an important part of the evolution for online payment options, the security software provider said, adding:

“The majority of retailers are now happy for us to use whatever payment method we prefer in order to stop us from going elsewhere. From credit card transactions and bank transfers, to cryptocurrency, subscriptions, and loyalty points, we can pay for goods and services in more ways than ever before.”

Unlike in 2013, there are now numerous altcoins and tokens participating in a system of payments. Debit or credit cards, however, remain the most popular options. Fintech solutions are also important to online shopping although Kaspersky pointed to risks of theft or hacks.

Digital assets pose multiple challenges for payment, especially when the merchant is ready to accept zero-confirmation transactions. In the past, networks were trusted for zero-confirmations, but recent attacks against some of the coins have made vendors more skeptical. Online shopping allows for enough time to achieve a greater number of confirmations from a blockchain, while in-person shopping has used zero confirmation transactions to reduce waiting time.

Several crypto assets have come up with claims of providing an easy form of online payments. Bitcoin Cash (BCH) allows small SMS payments, and Verge (XVG) and ReddCoin (RDD) attempt to offer small-scale payment options for digital goods. Bitcoin is witnessing its Lightning Network grow as an alternative and faster form of using the leading digital coin. Litecoin (LTC) is also trying to position itself as a coin for everyday spending.

Bitcoin and altcoin ATMs are also spreading across the world. While some merchants discontinue cryptocurrency usage, there are still physical venues that accept various digital assets, as the Coinmap tool shows. Currently, the BTC network has extremely low fees despite increasing usage. Altcoins and tokens are attempting to offer even cheaper or free transactions.

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