Why Customer Data Protection Should Be at the Top of Your Priority List

February 8th, 2022

“We regret to inform you that our organization experienced a recent security incident….”

These days, you count yourself lucky if you’ve only heard those words once from vendors who have your sensitive information. Your heart races, trying to remember what data they have. Credit card? Definitely. Social Security number? You hope not!

It’s no surprise that customers are taking notice of how often these breaches happen, and that customer data protection has become a very high priority – 93% of consumers say they consider the trustworthiness of an organization before making a purchase.

If your business includes the collection and storage of sensitive information, it’s time to reevaluate how to protect consumer data and increase your cybersecurity.

Cybersecurity Trends and Threats for 2022

In the ever-evolving digital world, cybersecurity changes must outpace the speed with which cybercriminals change their assault tactics. The moment one vulnerability is patched, another is discovered. It’s important to stay on top of the latest in cybersecurity trends to make sure you don’t leave your defenses down. A moment of weakness can have lasting consequences, for your business and for your customer base.

Escalating Ransomware Threats

Ransomware attacks are accelerating at a breakneck speed (the only thing spreading faster than omicron!), up 93% in 2021 and expected to keep increasing in 2022. Not only is this a costly problem for your business, but your customers are also taking note.

When you suffer a breach, word spreads. A whopping 84% of consumers said they talk about their negative experiences when a company doesn’t keep their data safe, which means letting family, friends, and colleagues know. It’s not just your business data at stake, it’s your reputation.

Data Privacy Regulation

In addition to cybercriminals coming after your data, governments around the world are increasing regulation for how data is used and stored. The European Union’s GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and California’s CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act) are just the beginning of the trend.

Stay ahead of the curve and update how your business secures data privacy and data protection. Prioritizing customer data privacy goes hand-in-hand with ensuring customer data security.

RELATED: Data Privacy vs. Data Protection: Do YOU Know the Difference?

Increased Cloud Security

Proactive businesses are migrating their operations to the cloud. If you’re new to cloud-based services it might sound counterintuitive, but data is much safer with a trustworthy cloud service provider. They stake their entire reputation on keeping your operations running smoothly, which means they hire the best of the best in data protection specialists and invest heavily in top-of-the-line hardware and software.

With the rise in remote work, authentication and user security are at greater risk than ever. A dedicated cloud security platform can guarantee compliance with the necessary standards and regulations (HIPAA, SOC 2, SOC 3, FFIEC, PCI DSS, GLBA, GDPR) to protect customer data no matter where your employees are logging in from.

RELATED: Why Data Security in the Cloud is Greater—Not Less—Than On-Premises Systems

What Data Protection Means to Your Customers

In today’s business climate, you’re being pulled in a lot of directions and putting out a lot of fires. It’s easy to let customer data security slip by the wayside. After all, if you haven’t had a breach yet, your customers aren’t worried, right?

The fact of the matter, though, is that you must be proactive about data security. When 86% of the population says that data privacy is a priority, it’s apparent that no business can overlook their security protocols if they want the continued trust of their consumer base.

The majority of consumers – 70% – believe companies aren’t doing enough to ensure their information is safe and assume their data has been leaked without their knowledge. Your customers aren’t waiting for you to tell them about a breach, they are becoming more and more picky about whom they give their personally identifiable information (PII). In fact, 39% said security concerns about PII were the only reason they chose not to do business with a vendor.

The Impact of Customer Data Protection

With today’s savvy customers, one slip-up could be your downfall. Data privacy and data protection is becoming increasingly important to customers. Ransomware, in particular, is a big concern.

  • 59% of customers said they would avoid a business that suffered a security breach in the past year. If you’ve suffered a breach in the last three years, 45% of customers would still avoid your business.
  • 58% of customers said they’d switch to a competitor if they experienced one or two ransomware-related service disruptions.
  • 37% of customers said they’d switch to a competitor if they experienced a service disruption lasting 24 hours.
  • 76% of consumers believe they can’t protect their own personal data because it’s too hard to figure out how businesses are using or protecting their information.
  • 68% of the US population are concerned about how much data businesses are collecting.
  • 30% of the US population are not willing to share any personal information at all.

Cloud Service Providers Like Virtual Systems Are Data Security Experts

Many companies struggle with the complex topic of cybersecurity. It’s an easy concept to grasp, but difficult to put into practice. That’s why businesses like yours are turning to security experts for help.

Cloud service providers like VSystems are on the cutting edge of data security. We are dedicated to providing top-of-the-line security controls to prevent malware from both internal and external sources. We’ve invested in the most advanced technology to provide continuous monitoring and instantaneous threat response.

By connecting with our comprehensive security platform, your complex data protection operations are handled by two of the most trusted names in the computing world: Webroot and Sophos.

Webroot’s threat intelligence services and multi-vector protection for networks and endpoints protect businesses and individuals across the globe. And Sophos offers advanced endpoint protection that can both detect and investigate threats across firewalls, servers, endpoints, and other data sources.

Between Webroot and Sophos, you will know that you are covered for a variety of security avenues, including anti-malware, firewall, integrity monitoring, and log inspection. As ransomware becomes more aggressive, it’s not a question of if, but when, you will experience a cyberattack. So don’t wait for a breach before you reassess your security measures; make customer data protection a priority today.

RELATED: Outsourcing May Be Your Answer to Growing Security and Compliance Complexity

Protect Your Customer Data with Virtual Systems

Increasing cyberattacks and vigilant customer awareness of data breaches have put data security in the spotlight. It’s time to assess your vulnerabilities and increase your cybersecurity.

The team at Virtual Systems helps customers safely navigate the multiverse of cloud infrastructure. We make security easier for you by putting together a comprehensive plan to protect your company data and your customers’ privacy in the cloud. Your peace of mind is our mission.

If you’re ready to make customer data protection a priority, contact us today.


Cisco Secure. (2021). Building Consumer Confidence Through Transparency and Control. San Jose, CA: Cisco Systems, Inc. Retrieved from https://www.cisco.com/c/dam/en_us/about/doing_business/trust-center/docs/cisco-cybersecurity-series-2021-cps.pdf

Arcserve. (2020). RANSOMWARE’S STUNNING IMPACT ON CONSUMER LOYALTY AND PURCHASING BEHAVIOR. Eden Prairie, MN: Arcserve, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.arcserve.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/Ransomwares-Stunning-Impact-on-Consumer-Loyalty-and-Purchasing-Behavior-Arcserve.pdf 

Check Point. (2021). 2021 Cyber Trends Report. San Carlos, CA: Check Point Software Technologies LTD. Retrieved from https://pages.checkpoint.com/cyber-attack-2021-trends.html

KPMG. (2021, Aug). Corporate Data Responsibility: Bridging the consumer trust gap. New York, NY: KPMG. Retrieved from https://advisory.kpmg.us/articles/2021/bridging-the-trust-chasm.html

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