Understanding Data Privacy
by Gergo Varga, Senior Content Manager, SEON
Today, we are living in a world where data is everything. We use it in every part of our lives to communicate with each other and our devices, to organize our lives, and to make our lives easier. It has also become an indispensable part of any businesses as it helps them make informed business decisions and improve their business operations. But they are not the only ones who consider data valuable as cybercriminals have also recognized the value of information. If they get access to that data, cybercriminals can cause disastrous consequences for businesses which is why data privacy and protection should become a priority for all businesses.
Even though the threat of cyber attacks is ever-present, a large number of businesses still haven’t updated their security protocols to include fraud detection software as they don’t believe cybercriminals can do any damage to them since they do not keep any valuable data. This is where they are wrong as for cybercriminals all data is valuable, from standard internal data they can use for ransomware or extract data to use in further cyberattacks, to more valuable information like intellectual property data, payment details from customers or suppliers databases. In 2020 more than 80% of firms reported a dramatic rise in cyber attacks. Every business has something to lose in case of a cyber attack.
Data privacy consists of the policies and processes that dictate how businesses can collect, share, and use data while staying in compliance with the applicable privacy laws. This data can range from customers’ private details to confidential financial records, or from patients’ medical records to employees’ personal files, all depending on the nature of the business which is collecting the data. 65% of American voters say data privacy is one of the biggest issues our society faces. While businesses need to collect and store personal data about users in order to provide services, at the same time they need to be aware of the most secure way they can do it to ensure the privacy and safety of their customers and the business.
Every organization has access to confidential and sensitive information that they need to protect from getting into the wrong hands. From corporate secrets to customer data, keeping this data safe needs to be a priority of any business. From reputational to financial damage or even putting a stop to business continuity, there is no limit in the consequences cyber attacks can leave in their wake. It could cost companies billions of dollars. Take the Marriott breach from 2020 as an example. It started with a theft of the employee login credentials which were used to access 5.2 million guests’ information they can now use for further malicious actions. Not only did Marriott have to pay a fine as they failed to protect customers’ private data and had to face a class-action lawsuit, but the breach also caused a significant lack of trust of possible customers resulting in further financial loss.
Making data privacy a priority for your business is not only a legal matter so you can stay compliant with law regulations, but it is also key to business success. Not only does it protect your business data from falling victim to cyber-attack and from causing significant financial damage, but it also helps you retain the previous customers and even to attract new ones as they feel comfortable putting their trust in you. Without the customers, you would not have a business to run which is why it is extremely important you keep them happy and secure.
About the Author
Gergo Varga, Senior Content Manager at SEON. Fraud Fighters
Gergo Varga has been fighting online fraud since 2009 at various companies – even co-founding his own anti-fraud startup. He’s the author of the Fraud Prevention Guide for Dummies – SEON Special edition. He currently works as the Senior Content Manager / Evangelist at SEON, using his industry knowledge to keep marketing sharp, communicating between the different departments to understand what’s happening on the frontlines of fraud detection. He lives in Budapest, Hungary, and is an avid reader of philosophy and history.