Business

How To Protect Customer Data

Protecting customer data should be a priority for your business. Even if this can feel like an unnecessary use of time and resources, there are plenty of compelling reasons why you should act. Below, we explore why you should protect customer data and how you can do it.

What is customer data?

Customer data is the personal information you store regarding the people who’ve shopped with you. This could be behavioural, demographic or personal information – usually, it’s provided by a customer when they make a purchase. You can use this data to tailor each customer’s own experience to make shopping more efficient, but you also have a responsibility to protect this information.

Why protect it?

For a start, there’s the moral responsibility. Customers have entrusted you with their personal information: if you fail to protect it and allow other people to access their information, then you’ll have broken their trust. This can have a severe impact on your reputation. At the same time, some GDPR laws in the UK protect customers’ data. If you fail to adhere to these laws, then you could face a sizable fine. Indeed, the average cost of data breaches across the last 12 months for all businesses in the UK was just over £2500, but it does vary by company size. The larger the company the more the average cost of data breaches grew. To ensure that you avoid these financial penalties, it’s vital that your business protects customer data.

How to secure it

Safer systems

Safer systems can help minimise the risk of a data breach in your business. Indeed, the systems your customers interact with should store data securely and prioritise data security. To achieve this you could invest in open banking solutions to make payments faster and more secure for customers. On top of this, if you have a number of employees working from home, it’s well worth investing in a quality private VPN – this creates an encrypted internet connection from a device to the company’s network to protect data from hackers.

Training

Training your staff is essential for stopping data breaches too. You can begin by training staff how to securely handle data in the first place. But you can also run fake phishing tests so that staff are aware of common ways hackers attempt to steal data. By empowering your employees to deal with data breaches at source, you can make your whole business run more efficiently.

Protecting customer data is essential for a healthy business. And by following the advice above, you should be all set to responsibly safeguard your customers’ data and build up a trustworthy reputation for your company.

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