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Importance of Safeguarding User Data in the Relocation Industry

Chris Green, Head of Business Continuity of Qatar Air, has said that the difficulty for relocation industries is making a full risk assessment of all supply chains. As quoted, “The difficulty in the supply chain discussion is about understanding that chain. Firms have suppliers, who have suppliers, who have suppliers.” Still, businesses must try to do so or face drastic consequences.

User data privacy is the person’s ability to access personal data available online. Protection of personal data is usually the restriction of access to such data. Businesses need to safeguard user data since they collect and store personal information online. The relocation industry also requires data for its logistic chains. Some platforms may contain more information than users realise. Meanwhile, others may not have enough measures for safeguarding user data.

While many shipping firms in the relocation industry relied heavily on online data, cyber protection remains minimal. A data breach such as the cyberattack on global transport and logistic conglomerate Maersk in 2017 can lead to a business freeze. Maersk was unable to process shipping orders and reportedly lost $200-300 million due to the NotPetya virus. A 2017 study by Futurenautics has shown that 44% of ship operators believe their company’s current IT defences are ineffective at repelling cyber-attacks, and 39% experienced a cyber attack in the last 12 months.

Consequently, this lack of protection influences customers’ perceptions of the business. KPMG reported 50% of consumers said they do not wholly trust businesses to protect their data. When there is a lack of trust and insufficient cyber protection, the company’s reputation suffers. A Centrify study found 80% of consumers in developed nations will defect from a business if their information is compromised. When businesses see the importance of user data privacy, customer experience improves. Players in the relocation industry must heed the following points if they wish to build strong relationships with customers:

Importance of safeguarding user data

Importance of safeguarding user data in the relocation industry

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1. To meet compliance requirements

As cyber protection becomes a priority for governments worldwide, countries have drawn up regulatory frameworks to enforce privacy-compliance practices and raise organisational standards. Organisations need to comply or face the consequences. 

One example is the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), considered the strictest privacy and security law globally. Though the European Union passed it (EU), it imposes obligations on organisations anywhere, so long as data is collected from people in the EU.

It is just the start of the regulatory evolution, as other countries increasingly legalise their own privacy regulations. Singapore has its own Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA), which comprises various requirements governing Singapore’s collection, use, disclosure, and care of personal data.

The sheer volume of regulation increases pressures on organisations. Organisations that do not comply with privacy laws and standards will face fines of tens of millions of dollars and other long-term penalties. They also risk losing valuable business relationships by not complying with their contractual requirements.

2. To prevent breaches that hurt businesses

Implementing measures to safeguard user data will reduce the number of security incidents. Privacy breaches result in drastic consequences for businesses in the relocation industry.

The cyberattack that caused Maersk to freeze its operations also affected FedEx, which had to slow delivery operations due to disruptions at its TNT Express subsidiary. The company had to scramble for alternative delivery options, and share prices fell with lower revenue forecasts. Since FedEx had no cyber insurance, the company had to bear the material loss fully.

Apart from financial losses, fewer breaches mean the business does not lose customers’ trust. It also means the company does not deal with legal repercussions. Therefore, companies should note the importance of preventing breaches.

3.  To maintain and improve brand value

Another way of signalling business transparency for increased brand visibility is to emphasise the The importance of maintaining brand value can be seen through this survey. 46% of organisations damage their reputation and brand value when user data is leaked. In fact, amongst all IT failures that affected a company’s brand value, security breaches had the highest impact. According to the same survey, when service is disrupted because of a data loss, customers tend to be less forgiving compared to if they perceive events to be outside a company’s control, e.g. a natural disaster. 

The relocation industry needs to do its risk assessment as it’s clear that customers perceive cyber threats as something companies can control. 

Organisations should explicitly make safeguarding user data of their consumers a primary goal and consistently meet itl with transparency and care. By doing so, it will help customers build emotional connections, improving brand value.

4. To strengthen and grow business

Consumers have high expectations of businesses in safeguarding user data. A Pew report found that 93% of Americans want control over who is allowed to get their information, and 90% said that they tried to control the specific types of information collected. Businesses that implement privacy protections to meet such expectations will strengthen and grow their business.

Research showed that right after Target experienced a cyberattack which led to leaked user data in 2013, their consumer perception dipped 54.6% in the next year. After that, Target took six years of rebuilding its reputation, amping up its customer experience efforts. Consumers need companies to show concern for safeguarding user data, and they become preferred over competitors that do not provide such controls.

5. To maintain public, investor and customer trust

The most recent cyberattack news is from hotel booking site RedDoorz, which affected nearly 5.9 million users’ data. Operated by Singapore firm Commeasure, the government has fined the firm $74,000. Such news can drastically reduce the public, investor and customer trust in online platforms.

According to a Ponemon study commissioned by Centrify, 65% of individuals whose personal data was breached lost trust in the organisation after the breach. Organisations that do not value the importance of safeguarding user data will lose stakeholders’ trust, which results in a negative reputation.

How Moovaz Can Help

It is time that companies should not underestimate the potential losses brought by the lack of protection of customer data. Implementing strict regulations and internal management changes are some of the ways businesses can go about guarding these important data.

Here at Moovaz, we understand data confidentiality and the importance of protecting customers’ data. As such, our platform is designed with international data protection standard to enhance your customer’s relocation journey. Partner with us today to offer the best customer experience!

Feel free to contact us if you wish to partner with us.
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