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86% of customers would shun brands following a data breach

If credit card details are compromised, shoppers will not return to do business

Surrey, 27 March 2014 - New research commissioned by Semafone® has revealed that the overwhelming majority of people would not do business with a company that had failed to protect its customers' card data. In the survey, conducted by OnePoll, 86.55% of 2,000 respondents stated that they were "not at all likely" or "not very likely" to do business with an organisation that had suffered a data breach involving credit or debit card details. The proportion of women expressing this view was 91.48%, which was markedly higher than the figure of 81.93% for men.

The survey also revealed that other types of data breach would drastically erode customer confidence. Below are the percentages of people who stated that they were "not at all likely" or "not very likely" to do business with an organisation which had suffered breaches involving the following types of personal data:

  • Credit or debit card details 86.55%
  • Home address: 82.95%
  • Telephone number: 80.10%
  • Email address: 76%

Tim Critchley, CEO of Semafone, commented, "These figures serve to underline what we should already know - that the reputational damage suffered by companies who fail to protect personal data can translate directly into a loss of business. The protection of card details is no longer simply a matter of best practice - the economic consequences of a failure to do so are potentially devastating for a business of any size."

The research findings coincide with news that the European Parliament has voted to approve the EU's new data protection legislation, which brings in a number of serious measures in favour of customers. These include a potential fine of 5% of gross revenues for companies who fail to protect customer data adequately, and the requirement to inform local data protection authorities within 24 hours of any breach.

"I can't see how any organisation can continue to ignore the increasingly loud demand from customers to keep personal data safe," continued Critchley. "Our research shows how seriously the public takes the safeguarding of its data, and the new data protection legislation makes effective security even more imperative. Not only will offending companies face the financial penalty of a fine, but they will suffer the immediate negative publicity that comes from the 24 hour disclosure rule. I think we are going to see a great many companies starting to take security a whole lot more seriously. "

Notes to editors

About Semafone's software
Semafone's software allows customers to enter their own card details directly into the telephone handset when they pay over the phone, without losing voice contact with the call centre agent. The tones made by the individual keys are disguised so they cannot be identified by their sound and no card data is taken into the computer and telephony systems of the call centre, making the transaction ultra-secure. To find out more about how calls can be protected using the Secured by Semafone® trustmark, visit www.semafone.com/secured-semafone/shhh

Anyone who has been a victim of fraud can contact the police helpline Action Fraud: 0300 123 2040 http://www.actionfraud.police.uk/

About Semafone
Semafone provides software to contact centres so they can take secure credit and debit card payments over the phone. Using Semafone's patented payment method, card data is transmitted directly from the customer's telephone keypad to the bank. This takes the contact centre out of scope of PCI DSS regulations, removing the threat of fraud and its associated reputational damage.

Semafone serves a wide range of industry sectors including financial services, media, retail, utilities, travel and tourism and the public sector. Customers include the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Aviva Canada, TalkTalk, Nemo Personal Finance, Sky and Yorkshire Water.

Founded in 2009, Semafone received a £1.9m investment from Octopus Ventures in 2010 and a further £1.5m, primarily from existing investors, in 2012.

Further information about Semafone is available at www.semafone.com.

Semafone and Secured by Semafone are the registered trademarks of Semafone Limited.

About the research
The research was conducted by OnePoll in March 2014.

2000 UK Adults responded to the following question by selecting "very likely", "likely", "not very likely", or "not at all likely".

1. As a customer, how likely would you be to do business with an organisation which had suffered a security breach involving one of the types of personal data listed below?

  • Credit or debit card details
  • Home address
  • Telephone number
  • Email address

For a full copy of the research, please contact
Xanthe Vaughan Williams or Flo Levy
Fourth Day Public Relations
Tel: +44 (0)20 7403 4411
Email: [email protected] or [email protected]

Source: RealWire

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