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Americans Want Banks To Spy On Their Accounts

Nine out of ten Americans want their banks to monitor their online accounts for signs of suspicious behavior, much as credit card companies do now, a survey published Tuesday said.

Conducted by RSA Security, the poll also found that although consumers aren't seeing a rise in the number of phishing e-mails, they are increasingly wary of all electronic communiqu?s from their banks. According to telephone survey, 79 percent said that they were less likely to respond to e-mail from their bank because of worry over phishing scams; that's up nine points from 2004, said RSA.

A solid majority of 59 percent want their banks to contact them when something fishy is found, while 73 percent think banks should boost security by moving to a stronger authentication scheme than the typical username and password.

"Consumers seem to feel comfortable with the notion of their financial institution monitoring their online activity and contacting them when something suspicious is detected, just as they've become accustomed to [the same in] credit cards," said Chris Young, the general manager of RSA Cyota, in a statement.

RSA, which has heavily promoted its SecurID efforts in two-factor authentication to financial institutions and end-users, also said the survey claimed consumers would be willing to use tokens if they were free (43 percent) and that they wanted graphical reverse-authentication indications on bank Web sites that the URL was legit (55 percent).

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