Aussies would punish firms over data breaches


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Australians are ready and willing to punish companies that fail to protect their personal data, according to a survey from data management provider Veritas Technologies.

A survey of consumers across 14 countries including Australia, conducted by 3GEM, found that if a brand fails to safeguard their personal data, 82% would tell their friends and family to boycott the brand.

In addition, 74% would report the business to regulators, 63% would stop buying from the brand and 64% would post negative comments about the brand online.

By contrast, over half (54%) indicated that they would spend more money with a brand they do trust to look after their data, with 22% willing to spend up to 25% more with businesses that take data protection seriously.

But 37% of consumers believe most businesses don’t know how to protect their personal data, and 39% say they have no visibility into how companies are using or sharing their data.

As a result, 22% of respondents are very concerned that their personal data will be stolen. Growing concerns around the protection of personal data is also leading to increasing numbers of consumers being unwilling to consent to sharing certain types of data.

These include personal finance details (58%), online habits (41%), location (40%), medical records (40%), their sexual orientation (25%) and their religious preference (23%).

“In light of recent events and changes in the law, consumers need much more reassurance when it comes to what personal data companies hold on them, and how it is shared and used,” Veritas Senior Director and Global Privacy Lead Tamzin Evershed said.

“This could have significant implications for businesses that rely on collecting consumer data to provide intelligent and targeted services, such as location-based apps. The most successful companies will be those that are able to demonstrate that they are managing and protecting personal data in a compliant way across the board.”

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