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Trust in Companies’ Ability to Protect Personal Data Is on the Decline

By Filip Truta on Oct 24, 2019 | 0 Comments

The stakes are higher than ever for hacked companies today as most customers say they would completely abandon a brand following a breach.

To better gauge how data privacy and security are impacting consumers’ relationships with their service providers, Ping Identity surveyed more than 4,000 people across the US, UK, Australia, France and Germany.

81% of people would stop engaging with a brand online following a data breach, up three percentage points from 78% from 2018. A quarter of respondents said they would stop interacting with the brand in any capacity.

Life is somewhat unfair for brands in this day and age. Even though customers sometimes fall victim to cybercrime through their own carelessness, such as by responding to phishing scams or using unencrypted Wi-Fi connections, 63% of people still say the company is always responsible for protecting user data.

“Since companies are often blamed for fraud and privacy breaches, even if they result from potentially unsafe consumer choices, companies have to go the extra mile to protect their customer data,” reads the report.

55% of people say a company sharing their personal data without permission is more likely than any other scenario to deter them from using that brand’s products, even more than a data breach (27%). Only 14% of respondents would readily sign up for and use an application or service following a breach.

“Increasingly, data breaches are driving people to change their relationships with affected companies, with a growing number of people disengaging completely in the wake of a breach,” the report says.

Data security and privacy issues increase consumer mistrust – that much is a given. But which industries are most susceptible to this issue? According to the research, social media companies are the least trusted, followed by financial services and healthcare firms.

“The fact that banks aren’t more trusted is somewhat surprising given their reputation as being on the forefront of security protection. For healthcare companies, ransomware attacks impacting hospitals may be dragging consumer confidence down,” according to the report.

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Author: Filip Truta

Filip is an experienced writer with over a decade of practice in the technology realm. He has covered a wide range of topics in such industries as gaming, software, hardware and cyber-security, and has worked in various B2B and B2C marketing roles. Filip currently serves as Information Security Analyst with Bitdefender.