Andrea Johnson

Data Security: Why transparency matters in an era of breaches

December 12th, 2014

Want to build customer trust?

Be transparent about how you’re using and protecting the information you gather from them.

That’s the word from James Koons, Chief Privacy Officer for Listrak, which provides omnichannel digital marketing solutions to retailers.

James’ statement is underscored by the MarketingSherpa Ecommerce Benchmark Study. It reveals that frequent security evaluation correlates with greater ecommerce success. Specifically, of the 2,161 marketers responding, those that evaluated security on a daily or weekly basis had more than a 10% higher rate of revenue and responsiveness than those that didn’t.

“Consumers are savvier when it comes to privacy and security,” James explained, “and we continue to get those ‘your-data-may-have-been-compromised-please-change-your-password’ messages, so we can’t help as consumers to be learned in that area.”


“Nowadays, it’s not a question of if something happens, it’s when something happens. How prepared are you and what are you going to do?” James asked.

Here are some highlights from their conversation in the MarketingSherpa Media Center at IRCE:


Audit your vendors’ security

Make sure your vendors are following best practices and standards.

“You don’t want to find out your important data is sitting in Joe’s Data Shack in his grandmother’s basement in Peoria,” James said.


Publish your privacy statement on your website

Let customers know what cookies you’re setting, what you’re tracking, what data you’re using and why. Do the same with social media.


Never take any data for granted

You’d be surprised what data criminals want to steal. He related a story where a makeup company’s data on skin, hair and eye color was breached by a terrorist group that was going to use the information to create fake passports.

“When we think about having this amount of data, we would never think it could have an impact on our national security, but the potential is there,” James added.


Want to learn more about how to build customer trust? Attend Listrak’s full-day workshop at MarketingSherpa Email Summit 2015 on how to deliver one-to-one personalized product recommendations.


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Categories: Consumer Marketing Tags: , , , , , ,

  1. December 14th, 2014 at 08:46 | #1

    I watched this video earlier – some really good points are taken there.

    Maybe a little off-topic, but really nice blog of yours. I will become more frequent visitor 🙂

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