Customer Service In The Digital Age: Prioritizing Data Security

prioritizing data security

Every form of interaction you make with a customer is important. Digital technology has increased opportunities to get in touch with them. Organizations today use different digital technologies to improve interactions.

The tools help them learn client behavior and create tailor-made ways to connect. Digital customer service increases satisfaction, trust, and retention. Zendesk reports that 75% of customers buy more from a company that offers good service.

To improve service, companies use the tools to collect customer data. Prioritizing data security is important in service. A report shows businesses that protect customer data build credibility. In the digital age, they gain the trust of customers. Organizations need to know the potential risks that data faces. They must develop and implement a plan for keeping it safe.

Why Good Customer Experience in the Digital Age is Important

Digital customer experience is built on several key components. The term refers to every type of online interaction customers get with your company. They may include your brand’s website, social media, and apps. When you think about digital experience, consider any virtual touchpoints. They are the points customers use to connect with your business.

These include chatbot-guided service and outsourced after hours support. Here are statistics that explain the importance of good customer experience. 91% of U.S. consumers emphasize better customer service than earlier. If we enhance the customer service by 20% then we can increase the cross selling by 15%-25%.

Customers use different digital gadgets when connecting to different businesses. The main gadgets they may use are phones and computers. You need to invest in quality gadgets to connect better with customers. An iPhone allows you to store data and browse online. To protect your data, understand how to private search on your iPhone.

One of the ways is to hide your browsing activities using a private browser iPhone. You need to activate your private browsing Safari iPhone to enhance your safety. You may also activate incognito mode on iPhone. To understand the benefit, first understand what private browsing is on an iPhone. It is an iPhone setting that allows you to browse online without anyone tracing you. How to use incognito mode on iPhone is simple. Open Safari and activate incognito mode.

Bruce Temkin of Qualtrics XM Institute gave an important statement about customer service. He says that customers that have had a good customer experience are positive. They can recommend the company, and forgive its mistakes. They trust the company and would be willing to try out its new products. If customers have bad experience with the company then its impact on future sales is paramount. $3.7 trillion of sales might not be possible because customers are not happy with the past communication and products of the companies.

In the digital era, data is critical for improving experience. Data helps organizations understand customer needs. They learn their preferences and behavior through data. Organizations rely on it to map the customer journey. They identify touch points and pain points.

With this understanding, companies offer satisfactory solutions to their customers. Staying in touch with customers requires an intentional effort from companies. They must give priority to the important components of digital experience. They include the following.

  • A smooth omnichannel engagement:- Create multiple engagement channels to extend personalized experiences. Brands that offer omnichannel engagement grow annual revenue by 9.5%. They turn 89% of buyers into return customers.
  • Proactive customer service delivery:- Be the first to make a move instead of waiting for customers to make a move. 59% of proactive companies record higher engagement and loyalty. “Giving focus to the customer makes the company more resilient.” (Jeff Bezos).
  • Adopt emerging technologies:- Emerging technologies give your company an enhanced competitive edge. You will improve efficiency and service.
  • Seamless feedback:- Real-time feedback increases relationships and good impressions. Customer feedback increases conversions and engagement.
  • Personalization:- Tailor the customer experience based on their individual needs. They will feel valued and become loyal. 76% of customers expect personalization (Zendesk). There is no one-size-fits-all audience.
  • The use of AI to drive interactions:- The use of AI in customer interactions improves engagement. AI helps generate huge data and analyzes it in real-time. Companies use it to know needs, and trends, and to customize services. AI will power 95% of interactions by 2025.
  • Improved data security:- Protect data to build trust and reputation. Follow best practices for collecting, storing, and analyzing data. 94% of customers will not buy from a brand if it does not protect personal data.

Why Customer Data Security is Important

Customer data is all the information customers share with your company. This data comes from multiple places across the internet. Some of it comes from your website, marketing platforms, and payment wallets.

A lot of it may come from social media, mobile apps, and surveys. It could come from your marketing campaigns, emails, and chatbots. Customer data platform is forecasted to grow to $10.3 billion by 2025.

Once collected, companies store this data in different places because it is huge. They may store it in CRM, cloud-based databases, or servers. Organizations retrieve the stored data and use AI to analyze it. They use it to improve online shopping experience and products. Marketing teams use email addresses and telephone contacts for marketing.

Customer data faces a lot of cybersecurity risks. Breaches could dispose of sensitive data. The CRM, cloud-based databases, and servers can be hacked. Some workers might not be careful when sharing data. The importance of data security in customer service cannot be ignored. It can be summarized as follows.

  • Useful for communication:- Data provides companies with insights about the most appropriate channels to communicate with customers. 98% of customers value effective communication from companies.
  • Important for segmenting customers:- Brands use data to segment customers based on value, region, age, and behavior. 80% of marketing ROI is generated from segmented campaigns.
  • It is useful for overcoming competition:- Data allows you to understand where your customers have been. You learn about their interests, pains, and needs. Customers will go to competitors 4 times more if their pain is customer service-based.

Giving Priority to Data Security

Data security management is important in any organization. 92% of people worry about their privacy while online. In a study, IBM discovered most breaches involve private data. Criminals often target to steal names, emails, and passwords. A 2023 report shows attacks happen every 39 seconds.

Statista shows more than 353 million people had their data compromised in 2023. The main forms of compromise were breaches, exposure, and leakage. Effective data protection requires organizations to know what causes the breaches. Data shows the main causes as weak or stolen credentials.

They occur due to app vulnerabilities and backdoor gaps. Breaches could occur due to allowing a lot of user permissions. Poor configurations and API exposure cause threats. More breaches can come from malware, ransomware, and social engineering. To prevent data exposure, companies need to prioritize data security.

Why Customer Data Protection Should be Prioritized

IT Governance UK shows 43 million people experienced breaches in March 2024 because of breach at France Travail. In a similar fashion, in February 2024, 26 billion records were breached. A report shows that 86% of people say data privacy is a priority. Based on these statistics, giving priority to security is no longer a necessity alone.

It is a crucial business strategy for improving customer service. The threats keep involving because hackers see the data as a goldmine. This presents unprecedented challenges for the companies. Companies need to invest in big data security management due to the following reasons.

  • The law demands it:- Customer information protection is no longer a choice but a must. Businesses that fail to do so could get serious penalties. Regulatory entities such as the GDPR and CCPA created standards for legal data regulatory compliance.
  • Attracting trust:- People trust brands that take care of their data. They become loyal to such companies and refer other people to them. Statista says 40% of people want brands to report how they use customer information. Knowmax reports that 97% of people want transparency.
  • Breaches destroy reputation:- Forbes reports that 46% of businesses damage their reputation after a breach. 65% of customers lose trust with a brand after their information is breached.
  • Protecting data helps brands stand out:- TechTarget reports that GDPR compliance boosts brand reputation. It offers the brand an edge against the competition. When customers know a company is protecting their data, it is easy to win them.
  • The cost of breaches is too high:- According to Statista, breach cost was $9.48 million in 2023. On average, companies spend $4.45 million per breach.
  • Safeguarding against cyber-attacks:- Within the past 12 months, 66% of brands have had a cyber-attack. Prioritizing data security is a strategy for protection against breaches and attacks.

Techniques for Protecting Customer Data

Breaches are real and affect many organizations daily. Cyberattacks lead to customer data loss and exposure. It leads to identity theft and many fraudulent activities. Organizations need to take customer information protection seriously.

Fred Wilson said that brands that work harder to protect user privacy are the ones that become the most successful. According to Robbie Sinclair, security is excessive all the time until it is not enough. Brands have a big role in keeping customer information secure. They have many options for this important responsibility.

1. Empower Your Employees

Data protection in a company should take both an offensive and defensive approach. Brands should both repel attacks and attack them if they happen. One of the strategies to succeed in this mission is to empower employees. Cybersecurity gaps in business systems could happen due to worker mistakes.

They might have used weak passwords or left for the day without signing out. They might open malicious links or download a spy app. Empowering employees can take different methods.

Train your team about information security and its importance. Teach them about potential risks such as malware and phishing. Empower them to detect malicious activities and report the issue in real-time.

Train them on how to counter or reverse attacks when technical support is not there. Empower them by creating safe workspaces. Test their readiness through fake drills.

2. Create Smart Passwords

30% of users experience a breach because of weak passwords. Smart passwords are login credentials containing a mixture of characters. They are 8 characters or more in length. They include lower and upper cases, numbers, and unique characters. You must make sure the characters are random.

It makes it harder for people to guess the sequence. You may use a smart password generator app for this purpose. App examples include LastPass, NordPass, KeePass, and Nexcess.

3. Encrypt

Encryption makes it impossible to read data when stolen. Even if it gets intercepted in transit, it cannot be useful. Most companies use either a private key or a public key to encrypt data. They may encrypt specific files that need to be migrated at the moment.

They may also encrypt the entire database including servers, local disks, and cloud. Blockchain technology provides a more secure way of storing and migrating data. In most countries, over 90% of online data is encrypted.

4. Limit access permission

Many brands experience breaches due to allowing too many access permissions. When more people get access to information, they might weaken the system. Some of them could misuse the permissions. Depending on the roles they have, they could allow third parties to access the information. This would compromise its integrity.

Conclusion - Taking Action for Customer Information Protection

Data protection is a critical issue that every company must consider. When investing in customer service, organizations should prioritize security. They need to protect their gadgets and valuable assets. Thousands of breaches occur daily but affected brands lose reputation. They lose trust and cannot stand out in the competition. Begin by empowering employees and investing in protection tools. Encryption and tight access permissions to keep its integrity safe.

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