Data privacy is one of the ground-breaking issues of our age. Life is a digital experience for most customers. Big as it already is, the importance of customer data continues to grow. We are told that “data is the new oil.” Some of the largest enterprises on Earth are founded on data such as Google, Amazon, Alibaba, Facebook, Netflix, Salesforce, Microsoft, and Oracle. Many of these big tech firms didn’t exist 25 years ago, making their success astonishing. But people see bad actors stealing data, mainly as a way to steal money. Companies and governments are threatened by ransom demands, and pay or lose their data. Plus, prominent companies who should know better seem to make frequent mistakes resulting in massive data breaches. Meanwhile, too many companies have treated customers badly, using their data in unexpected ways, selling it without true consent, and sometimes lying to customers about how their data is used. People are scared and some are angry, others are resigned. Who can we trust?
Data privacy laws are proliferating around the world, and enforcement is increasing. People have demanded action and the result has been new laws like GDPR in the EU and CPRA in California. APPI in Japan. LGPD in Brazil, and we expect new laws in India soon.
Regulations make businesses take notice because of sanctions and fines, but even more because of severe reputational risks. Many companies are responding by reducing their use of customer data, and data minimization is a wise thing to do. However, customers like being treated as individuals, not as a faceless part of a crowd. Respecting these new laws should not be at the expense of a joyful customer experience. Can we find ways to do both?
- Data privacy is the right thing to do. Of course it’s important to treat customers and their data with respect. Provide them excellent data security. Give customers control over their data. Why is this ever in doubt?
- Data privacy is important to our mission. At Intent HQ we are on a mission to help organisations treat every customer as an individual, even those with millions of customers. This requires an end-to-end privacy fabric. This fabric makes it possible for large companies to treat their customers in a more human way. It allows a giant communications services company to behave more like your favourite corner bakery.
- Trust is essential. Trust is fundamental to the success of our clients. Without trust our clients’ brands become commodities. Customers will not choose to share their data, and without customer data it isn’t possible to treat customers as individuals. It is vital for us to provide tools to enable our clients to gain and retain customer trust, and to create fantastic experiences by treating them as individuals.
We will be talking more about Customer Data Privacy. It’s an essential element of what we do. It is also a rapidly evolving conversation. From compliance to building trust, and from true consent to disclosure, most companies have work to do. There’s a lot to talk about! We hope you will join our conversation in the months ahead, as we post on this subject.