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Your Customers’ High Cost of Privacy

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This writer has said numerous times that privacy is waning and dying. Partly because we have allowed it with our bazillion posts to social and partly because of the shift from print advertising to digital. During that shift, lots of creative types figured out how to figure you out and get inside your digital head. But all at a cost of your privacy.

Arwa Mahdawi in the Gurdian brilliantly posed “Privacy isn’t dead, but it’s getting very expensive.” So true.

Ask yourself: as a decision maker for your business or employer, when it comes to protecting your organization’s customers’ or clients’ personal data, how proactive are you? And even if you’re proactive, are you aware of just what is involved on the part of the customer/client to ensure that their personal information doesn’t get into the wrong hands?

Or perhaps you’re not very active in this realm at all, figuring that it’s “up to the customer” to figure out how to secure their data, or that it’s the responsibility of the banks and credit card companies.

I contend that businesses who collect valuable data from customers and profit from it – from email addresses, to credit cards to SSNs – have the responsibility to protect the data collected. Otherwise customers inclined to do so must pay a fee to have their personal information protected. That business is booming.

It’s fair to speculate that if businesses, such as retailers and healthcare organizations, had an excellent history of keeping customers’ data airtight, the protection of privacy wouldn’t have become something that people must pay for.

Of course, there are ways that consumers can protect their privacy without paying for it, such as giving up the use of credit and debit cards, always remembering to disconnect their mobile device in public when they don’t need to be online, never seeing doctors, disabling their cookies, etc.

But let’s face it, these free approaches are impractical or even impossible. How many Internet users even know how to disable their cookies, or even what a cyber cookie is? How many know what a VPN is?

Consumers should not have to be tech savvy or have a lot of money or make impractical lifestyle changes in order for their private information to be leak-proof.

Robert Siciliano is an Identity Theft Expert to AllClearID. He is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Identity Was Stolen See him knock’em dead in this identity theft prevention video. Disclosures.

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