recent YouGov poll commissioned by the ICO shows that nearly eight out of ten people would think twice about giving their custom to an online company that had negative press for failing to stop a data security breach. 

The poll shows that 20% of people would definitely stop using a company’s services after hearing news of a data breach, while 57% would certainly consider stopping.  This is evidence that companies that fail to keep personal data safe risk long-lasting reputational damage that could impact on future success.  Perhaps more pertinently, 95% of people polled believe that companies should make it very clear from the outset how personal data is used, and that such data should not be shared with other companies.

Speaking at the Advertising Association’s leadership summit, Christopher Graham, the UK Information Commissioner, comments that people genuinely care about what happens to their personal information.  Getting it right is not only a legal obligation, but should be fundamental to an organisation’s reputation management.