According to a survey of 308 IT decision makers in the UK, Germany and France by data providers Pure Storage, 72 per cent of organisations claim to have collected data, which they have not used later on.
This was in direct response to a question of whether they had ever collected personal data such as financial information, HR data or customer opinions and insights.
According to Pure Storage’s report, 22 per cent of respondents admitted that they often collected data that they never used and a further 50 per cent claimed that they collected data that they did not use only occasionally. Furthermore, only 26 per cent said that they always used the data that they collected.
There were several mitigating reasons as to why data collected went unprocessed, such as a lack of skills or processing tools, as well as inherent high costs and time factors required to process data.
Despite this, 51 per cent of companies surveyed admitted to losing a business opportunity due to a lack of necessary information, with 31 per cent saying this was a weekly occurrence.
The problem that businesses are facing though is not just that there is a strong possibility of lost opportunity due to lack of necessary information, but the very real prospect that they could be in direct conflict with EU regulations.
The EU Privacy watchdog, the Article 29 Working Party, issued an opinion last year with regards to the unnecessary collection of personal data that said it is not necessary for the purposes that companies wish to pursue. The Working Party warned that companies could be found in breach of EU data protection laws.