Marketers should pay more attention to consumer security concerns, which ranked fourth behind product quality, customer service and company ethics in terms of driving sales, according to a study released today by the CMO Council.

"Not only are consumers' concerns rising about identity theft and computer security, but they're starting to do something about it," said Scott Van Camp, editorial director at the CMO Council in Palo Alto, Calif., which represents some 2,200 chief marketing officers worldwide.

The study, "Securing the Trust in Your Brand," found that 43 percent of American consumers have stopped a transaction in progress because of misgivings over security, usually when retailers ask for information they don't wish to divulge. Fifty-nine percent of those respondents said that after a security breach they would "strongly consider" or "definitely" take their business elsewhere.

The BPM Forum, Factiva and Symantec sponsored the study, which was conducted in April and May and surveyed 1,037 U.S. and 1,203 European consumers.

Overall, 60 percent of domestic consumers said they were "a little" (25 percent), "more" (23 percent) or "very" (12 percent) concerned about security.

In fact, the study found that U.S. consumers were more worried about identity theft and fraud than terrorism and personal safety. European consumers ranked family safety higher.

Get the full story at ADWEEK