In the wake of the recent attack on the Sony PlayStation Network and the resulting massive data breach, consumers are more than a little concerned about the security of the sensitive information that they provide companies. For the most part, many of them know very little about the online security measures in place at companies with whom they do business. And until recently, they probably didn’t care.
The Internet-dominated world we live in now is one of ease and convenience, where old and young alike hand over credit card numbers without hesitation to buy games, songs and fill up our Amazon carts with just a click of the mouse. We’re hopeful that our card numbers won’t end up in the wrong hands, but the fact is that our consumerism often outweighs our concerns about who is managing and protecting our personal data.
But now we are entering a new age, where consumers are being forced to take seriously the security of information they provide to companies. For businesses, this means making sure potential customers have knowledge of and confidence in your information security practices. If consumers don’t have that they may not be willing to cough up their credit card numbers. Establishing and maintaining consumer trust is key in this new age.
For companies reliant on consumer transactions, it is essential to communicate your security policies up front. You don’t have to go into great detail, but keep in mind the questions consumers may have, given recent high profile breaches. How are you protecting my data from exposure to hackers? Are you making sure an angry employee or ex-employee isn’t selling my credit card number to identity thieves?