Magazine article CRM Magazine

Customer Engagement: Omnichannel and Secure

Magazine article CRM Magazine

Customer Engagement: Omnichannel and Secure

Article excerpt

It's not enough to deliver efficient and personalized omnichannel customer experiences. They must be secure, too. Customers are increasingly concerned about the security and privacy of their data --as they should be. This white paper will cite some recent stats on data breaches and the financial cost to both customers and the companies with which they do business. We'll then explore various security challenges and how to overcome them while still delivering top-notch omnichannel customer experiences.

INTRODUCTION

Customers want it all: personalized service across multiple channels, service continuity from one channel to another, proactive offers via their preferred channel, reminders of upcoming payment deadlines and service calls, the ability to make payments quickly and easily via their mobile device--and they want their data protected.

Customers are increasingly concerned about the security and privacy of their data--and so are you. Security risks and regulatory compliance mandates make certain of it. But that leaves contact center managers in a quandary: Providing an omni-channel experience is difficult enough. How do you deliver a secure omnichannel customer experience?

The good news is omni-channel and security are not mutually exclusive. This white paper explores various security challenges and how to overcome them while still delivering top-notch omni-channel customer experiences.

UNDERSTANDING THE RISK OF DATA BREACH

The risk of data breach is not to be understated. In 2015 the number of U.S. data breaches tracked by the Identity Theft Resource Center totaled 781--marking the second highest year on record since the ITRC began tracking breaches in 2005. But that number pales in comparison to the number of records impacted. About half of those breaches involved Social Security numbers, and those breaches involved more than 164.4 million records.

If you think you're safe because you don't handle Social Security numbers, you're wrong. No industry is immune. The business sector topped the ITRC 2015 Breach List with nearly 40% of the breaches publicly reported, followed by the Health/Medical sector with 35.5%, and the Banking/Credit/Financial sector with 9.1% (which was nearly double the number reported in 2014).

Nor is there any single cause of data breach. While hacking incidents caused 37.9% of breaches in 2015, employee error/ negligence, accidental email/Internet exposure, insider theft, physical theft and subcontractor/third party were also to blame for their fair share of breaches. It's also worth keeping in mind that these numbers all reflect information that was made publicly available. It's not unusual for organizations to keep data breaches quiet or --worse--fail to detect them at all.

For businesses, the implications of a data breach boil down to financial loss. According to Ponemon Institute's 2015 Cost of Data Breach Study: Global Analysis, the average total cost of a data breach was $3.79 million. The average cost per lost or stolen record is $154. Notification costs remain low, but they are just the beginning as the costs associated with lost business are increasing. In fact, it is the loss of customers that increases the cost of a data breach. According to Ponemon, "Lost business costs are abnormal turnover of customers, increased customer acquisition activities, reputation losses and diminished good will. The average cost has increased from $1.45 million in 2014 to $1.57 million in 2015."

The implications for consumers can be even more devastating. Stolen credit card numbers are often sold on the black market to fraudsters. The resulting tarnished credit can make it difficult to qualify for future loans or to rent a home, for example. But a credit card number doesn't have to be breached for consumers to be affected. The theft of personally identifiable information (PII) can be used to commit identity theft and tarnish an individual's reputation, making it impossible for him/her to qualify for health insurance or get a job. …

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