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One year on and 84% of UK consumers don’t think GDPR has been effective

May 2019 by David Orme, IDEX Biometrics Asa

Three-fifths (59%) of consumers would feel more secure if their personal information was protected by their fingerprint

Despite the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in May last year, research from IDEX Biometrics Asa has revealed UK consumers don’t feel their personal information is any safer. In fact, 84% of respondents don’t think GDPR has been taken seriously enough by organisations who hold their data, and its security is still an issue.

This highlights the need for UK organisations, to make it clearer to their customers that they are prioritising GDPR compliance. Taking a security-first approach, by embracing innovations, including fingerprint biometric technology via smart cards, will play a key role in retaining and growing customer trust in data compliance.

Current poor data security practices, such as using locally held PINs or passwords, can leave data easily vulnerable to breaches, and fully justifies the fears held by consumers about the safety of their information. Indeed, three quarters (75%) of consumers admit to being concerned about the security of their personal information, once it has been shared with a company.

However, consumer trust in personal data protection greatly differs depending on the market sector. Almost half (45%) would be most comfortable sharing their personal information with financial service organisations, yet only 15% would say the same about sharing it with hospitality companies (such as bars and restaurants). This suggests organisations that are historically heavily regulated are typically more trusted by consumers. Illustrating the even greater need for companies operating outside these sectors to demonstrate data protection policies are watertight. Only by doing so will they gain consumer confidence in their compliance processes.

Biometric solutions are an effective means to address these concerns. Recent advances in applying fingerprint biometric sensors to smart cards and devices mean authentication credentials are only held on the card itself, removing the need to store data in a central database which is vulnerable to breaches and a potential entry point for hackers.

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