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Consumers fear for the safety of their personal data

Most of UK’s consumers are worried about what different organisations do with their personal data, a new survey has shown.

The survey, conducted by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO (opens in new tab)), shows that 85 per cent of UK consumers are concerned about how their personal details are passed on or sold to other organisations, and 77 per cent of consumers are worried about the security of the data.

Information commissioner Christopher Graham said companies must do more to inform consumers about the way their information is being shared, Computer Weekly reports.

“Providing people with enough information to understand how their details will be used is a basic principle of data protection,” he said.

Graham added that people remain concerned, even though the majority of companies operate within data protection law.

“This situation is not good for consumers, or for businesses,” he said.

Even though the UK will have a new data protection framework ready within the next three years, Graham believes organisations should not wait, but instead work on improving what they can – today.

“Businesses should take the results of our survey as a prompt to address consumers’ concerns and provide clearer information to explain when people’s details will be shared and with whom,” he said.

“Getting these basics right today will not only improve consumer trust, but also help a business along the road to future compliance.”

New European data protection law will come into force in 2017 at the earliest, but UK business should not delay in getting its house in order, says the ICO.

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.