Dubai – MENA Herald: A recent study carried out by FireEye, Inc., the leader in stopping today’s advanced cyberattacks, has revealed that data breaches significantly dent consumer trust in major brands.
With a number of high-profile breaches taking place on a global scale, the findings highlight rising concerns over the issue of cybersecurity and how public perception of a company is altered in the event of a breach, with 46% of consumers in the UAE stating that their view of a company subjected to an attack would be unfavourable.
Further insights from the study underscored the value of a sound cybersecurity strategy to consumers. 21% of respondents reported that data security was of utmost importance when purchasing from a company. 57% of respondents said they would stop purchasing from a compromised company and take legal action, while a mere 18% stated that they would continue to purchase from the company, but seek compensation through legal action.
“Data breaches have become far more commonplace than they used to be, with a host of actors ranging from single attackers to entire organizations now involved,” says Richard Turner, President for the EMEA region at FireEye. “The stature of the UAE as a hub for finance, retail and energy has grown exponentially over the years and has made it an enticing target for myriad cyberthreat groups. While the risk to a company’s finances and intellectual property are evident in the event of a breach, this survey highlights the hidden cost of cyberattacks on businesses, with customers less likely to buy from companies with a poor reputation for security, long after the actual incident has taken place. The findings from this survey reveal key lessons for boardroom executives who would be well-advised to take a much more proactive role in cybersecurity strategy. It’s also interesting to see that consumers are increasingly valuing attention to data security and base their purchasing decisions with this in mind. While companies have long viewed data security as a cost, it is now presenting an opportunity for them to attract a new and growing type of customer who wants assurance that their data is safe when dealing with companies.”

Key findings included the following:
Almost three-quarters (73%) of respondents reported that they would no longer be inclined to use the products/ services of an organization that was breached.
Almost half (46%) of UAE consumers feel more negatively about organizations that have been breached.
More than three-quarters (78%) stated that in light of recent breaches, they would be willing to provide less personal information than they have in the past.
72% reported that they would consider paying more to work with a provider that offered the same products/services but has better data security.
More than half (57%) of respondents said they would stop purchasing from a compromised company and take legal action; 18% stated that they would continue to purchase from the company, but seek compensation through legal action nevertheless.
More than a third (38%) of respondents reported a drop in loyalty in the event of a data breach.
70% of respondents said that they expect organizations that have been breached to inform them immediately in case criminals have obtained access to their personal data.