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Only 9% of Consumers Have Faith in Brands to Keep Their Data Secure

Consumer trust plummets to a ten year low in the wake of data scandals

Fujitsu UK & Ireland

London, December 04, 2013

Only 9% of consumers have any faith in organisations to protect their data, with nearly a third (29%) recording a decline in trust over the last year.

“The results of our research showed consumer tolerance for data loss is at an all-time low. With consumers battling to understand the impact on their personal information if a company is hacked, there is no room for error anymore. To remain ahead of their competitors – and trusted in the eyes of the consumer – organisations need to ensure they are robust in their security.” says David Robinson, Chief Security Officer, UK & Ireland, Fujitsu. “The effort required here is industrial, as companies are no longer fighting against individuals, but a sophisticated criminal industry, designed solely to access their data. We describe organisations in two groups, those who have been hacked, and those who will be, for no reason.”

Despite the technological evolution that has taken place over the last decade, allowing companies to personalise data and give a unique experience to each individual, consumers are more wary of data than ever before. Consumer trust has fallen in each and every sector, both public and private. 69% said this decline in trust was solely down to a lack of trust in the organisations that hold their personal information. This decline has been particularly acute for the public sector; almost two thirds of consumers said that fears over Government’s ability to safeguard their information has contributed to an overall erosion of trust around data. Social media companies, in particular, felt the wrath of the consumer, with 31% having ‘zero trust’ in the sector. Financial Services fared only marginally better, with only just over a third (36%) trusting companies in the sector, a fall of 15% over the decade.

Yet, despite consumer angst around the data issue, there is a lack of ownership by the general public towards it. Only 32% of consumers recognise their own involvement in keeping their data secure. Instead, consumers blame individuals, with over a third expecting to see repercussions for the member of staff deemed responsible and almost one in 10 holding the CEO personally responsible. A massive 20% saying they would inform the police of any data loss – seeing it a criminal offence.

Trust is being hampered by the fact that consumers are failing to see the results of the data they provide. This point came across throughout the survey, but none more so than when it came to the vertical sectors. Here it became apparent, with over a quarter of respondents believing that telecoms and utility companies use their data solely to extract more money from them. Only 15% of consumers see any value from their data being used, with 63% commenting that they do not want organisations to use their data to improve their experience. This was apparent in the financial services sector, where less than a quarter thought they were being served better thanks to the use of their data. In fact, nearly a quarter said their personal information was represented incorrectly on communications. This was an issue faced similarly by retailers. There, over a third received incorrect communication, with 40% saying they still have an impersonal experience – despite their data being collected.

Organisations are failing to capitalise on the data they have available, and, as such are failing to showcase and educate consumers on the tangible benefits of data collection. This is partly due to the fact that there is simply too much data available nowadays. Many organisations, in the absence of a data scientist (or an outsourced team of experts) are being caught out by the white noise of the volume, and are unable to cherry pick those golden gems which will both provide the consumer with a personalised experience, and help them grow revenue.

To truly change consumer opinion, organisations need to show value. That can, and will, only come when the public and private sector educates itself on data and recognises that investing money in testing, targeting and segmentation will more than pay for itself in the end.

“Having your personal data stolen is like being mugged for your handbag. Nowadays we keep as much information in our online wallet, as we do in our purse. So it’s no surprise that consumers are beginning to wake up to the dangers that lax security can mean online. As our results show there is a desire for transparency, and a real need to showcase the benefits of data to the average shopper.” - David Robinson, Chief Security Officer, UK & Ireland, Fujitsu

Supporting materials

  • Read an infographic on the report
  • Visit the Datageddon site for videos, featuring spokespeople from across the sector, and the full report alongside vertical papers, examining telecoms, utilities, financial services, retailers and the Government (local and central).

Notes to editors

Research for this report was conducted by OnePoll, an independent research consultancy based in London. 3,000 consumers from across the UK completed an online survey during October 2013.

About Fujitsu

Fujitsu is the leading Japanese information and communication technology (ICT) company offering a full range of technology products, solutions and services. Approximately 170,000 Fujitsu people support customers in more than 100 countries. We use our experience and the power of ICT to shape the future of society with our customers. Fujitsu Limited (TSE: 6702) reported consolidated revenues of 4.4 trillion yen (US$47 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2013. For more information, please see:

About Fujitsu UK & Ireland

Fujitsu UK & Ireland is a leading IT systems, services and products company employing over 10,100 people with an annual revenue of £1.6 billion. Additionally, Fujitsu’s other operations in the UK bring its total employee numbers to over 14,000 and its total revenues to £1.8 billion. Its business is in enabling its customers to realise their objectives by exploiting information technology through its integrated product and service portfolio. This includes consulting, applications, systems integration, managed services and product for customers in the private and public sectors including retail, financial services, telecoms, government, defence and consumer sectors. For more information, please see:

Georgina Greenspan

Phone: Phone: + 44 (0) 20 7861 2800
E-mail: E-mail:
Harvard PR

Graham Goulden

Phone: Phone: + 44 (0) 843 354 9568
E-mail: E-mail:
Company:Fujitsu UK & Ireland

Date: 04 December, 2013
City: London


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