Privacy and security concerns are reducing the likelihood that people will use the internet to conduct transactions online, a new study from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) found.
Of the homes surveyed, 29% had not conducted financial transactions online and 26% had not shopped online in the past year, according to the report.
The survey also found that 19 million households experienced some type of online security breach in the past year.
For the report, the Census Bureau gathered the data from 41,000 homes that use the internet.
Data breaches are definitely top-of-mind among Internet users, with 63% of homes expressing concerns about identity theft, while 45% said they were concerned about banking fraud.
The survey also found that if someone had experienced a data breach, they were more likely to avoid online activity in the future.
Encryption may be the answer to help alleviate some users' concerns, NTIA said.
"NTIA will continue to analyze relevant data, as well as potential policies—such as encouraging the widespread deployment of strong encryption and other security measures—that could help build trust in the Internet and stimulate the free flow of information and commerce online," the organization said in a blog post.
Businesses and government agencies alike are increasingly shifting to HTTPS as a way to enhance security, because it verifies the identity of a website or web service for a connecting client and encrypts almost all information sent between a website or service and the user. One organization in particular, Let's Encrypt, is working to make the internet more secure by offering free online security certificates.