16.10.2019

Embrace Privacy As Your Corporate Social Responsibility

Your organization faces two powerful trends:

  • The growing pressure of regulatory requirements on data protection that are emerging worldwide.
  • The increasing awareness of privacy rights, which causes customers to take action in their relationship with businesses.

You can choose to focus on compliance at the minimum possible cost, playing catch-up with regulators while delivering mediocre customer experience, or you could leverage compliance to stimulate corporate culture and identify privacy as one of the core values of your organization.

But commitment to privacy requires more than a marketing tag line. Without a real and tangible commitment to customers’ privacy, organizations will continue to fall short, and privacy-aware customers will notice it and leave.

Over the last three years, we have researched Fortune 100 firms that have embraced privacy as part of their corporate social responsibility (CSR). We interviewed many of their privacy and CSR leaders to learn how they have embraced privacy as a corporate social responsibility and how they’ve brought this commitment to life.

These firms signal to their customers, employees, partners, and other stakeholders that privacy is a corporate commitment. There is a growing cohort of firms that are including privacy in their CSR reports. We found that in 2016 and 2017, only 21 firms out of the global Fortune 100 mentioned privacy in their CSR, but this number grew to 28 in 2018.

In our new report, “Commit To Privacy As A Corporate Social Responsibility,” we discuss the growing group of firms that include privacy in their CSR reports and the business case for doing so.

(Written with Elsa Pikulik, Senior Research Associate at Forrester)

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