Businesses 'vastly overconfident' on security

Many also decline to limit additional usage of customer information

Businesses remain very overconfident about security, according to an extensive study on their practices.

The report, which interviewed 5,500 executives and 15,500 consumers globally, found a "startling" difference between firms' intentions on customer data privacy and the steps they take in practice. The study was commissioned by IT services firm Accenture.

Nearly three quarters, 73 percent, of firms believe they have adequate policies and technology in place to protect sensitive data, but 58 percent have lost sensitive data in the past two years. Six in 10 say it is a continually reoccurring problem.

In the UK alone, 76 percent of firms have suffered data breaches, yet 74 percent are convinced they have the right policies in place.

A separate report last year by researchers the Ponemon Institute found that data breaches cost companies an average of $6.6 billion (£4.3 billion).

Seventy percent of businesses acknowledged their obligation to take "reasonable steps" to protect the information, but many were unwilling to allow customers a say in where it is sent or how it is used.

Some 45 percent were unsure or disagreed with letting customers control what is collected, and 47 percent were not certain that customers should be able to control how the data is used. A similar proportion were not clear that limiting cross border data transfers, to countries with lesser privacy laws, was necessary. But over half of those businesses surveyed said they outsourced data processing and collection.

The results would likely disappoint many consumers, of whom over half said they had the right to control the usage of their data. But some 41 percent laid responsibility for data control with the government, not just the businesses themselves. In the UK, 49 percent of consumers said privacy was most important when making credit card purchases.

In the report, Accenture advised businesses to look more widely than simply the regulation, examining "all of the ways in which data is generated and collected". They should also create clear rules on data protection, it said, and create a strong culture of security and respect for customers' data.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Leo King

Computerworld UK
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2019

Bitdefender’s best-in-class security solutions have been awarded Product of the Year. Get cybersecurity that 500 MILLION users already have and trust!

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?