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Mar 10Jim Hoggatt

Using Data Privacy as a Competitive Advantage

Mar 10Jim Hoggatt

With the current news about data breaches at high profile companies, many companies are using their data security as a competitive advantage.

In a recent article in the Journal of Accountancy, the senior editor reports:

Data privacy doesn’t have to be an issue that keeps executives awake at night.  Companies can build trust if they give consumers this information on how their data are being used. Some companies even give customers the opportunity to decide which information about them can be shared.

The article cites a February 2014 PwC report that concludes that “Building and keeping customers’ trust is the cornerstone of this potential competitive advantage.”  One of many conclusions in the report includes:

Some companies put strong data privacy policies and controls into place, but they fail to monitor them and reassess them over time. “When they don’t go back and monitor …things often fade away, and things aren’t happening, and controls and processes aren’t going the way that senior management expects… so that monitoring is absolutely critical to make sure that the controls work, all the time.”

One Scottsdale-based company that specializes in IT security and cyber-security  is Terra Verde Services. The largest provider of its kind in Arizona, Terra Verde’s provides services world-wide to Fortune 500 customers, government entities, and to small and midsized companies.

Data privacy and security are vital components of any organization’s system of internal controls. When a significant breach occurs it also can be a nightmare for CEOs and business owners and for their customers, and can potentially have a significant adverse effect on the company’s corporate image and reputation. Is your company at risk… or does your proactive controls and security monitoring/testing  provide a competitive advantage?

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