Firms face reputational risk from poor handling of customers' private details

Companies risk having their reputation damaged because they are unprepared to manage the risks around their customers' private information, a report has found.

Private information threat: Not taken seriously enough by companies

The Edelman Privacy Risk Index looked at how businesses handle customer information, the impact it has on companies financially and their corporate reputation.

Involving 6,400 corporate privacy and security executives across the globe, the report has revealed that 57% of respondents think their organisation does not consider privacy and the protection of personal information to be a corporate priority.

The same percentage believe their company is not transparent about what it does with employee and customer information, while 61% are slow to respond to consumer and regulator complaints about privacy.

In a study based around the findings named The Costs, Causes and Consequences of Privacy Risk by the agency, a warning was issued around the findings.

‘Companies today are losing their customers, reputation and privacy because they are failing to properly manage data security in an environment full of customer expectations, security threats, critical media and regulatory action,’ the passage reads.

The analysis spans 29 countries around the world, with the research conducted by the Ponemon Institute.

Of those polled, more than six in ten said their organisation did not have the expertise, training or technology, while 55 per cent said their firm did not adequate resources to protect personal information.

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