June 17, 2019



Consumer trust and data security are making headlines around the world. Yet, despite this global trend, businesses don’t seem to be taking the issue of information security seriously. This week, Shred-it released its latest study on data protection, the 2019 Data Protection Report (DPR), and the results are surprising - and concerning. While businesses are incredibly confident that they will not suffer a data breach within the next 10 years, consumers are more concerned than ever. Consumers want businesses to demonstrate that they are making data security a priority, or, they will take their business elsewhere. 

When one data breach has the potential to cost a business millions of dollars in lost revenue, not to mention loss to its reputation and committed customer base, our study confirms that businesses must take the issue of data security seriously or suffer the consequences. 

The survey, conducted by IPSOS, looked at the data protection practices of both small and large businesses, employers and employees, and found the following in the Canadian market: 

  • Consumers are twice as likely to report that their personal data security has declined (50% less secure), as opposed improved (23% more secure), compared to ten years ago;
  • Companies need to be taking a more consumer-centric approach to thinking about the reputational importance of data security – most specifically, with millennials in mind. Our survey found that millennials (18-34) who make up the dominant consumer pool, are particularly less forgiving as they would be the most likely to lose trust (43%) seek compensation (33%), or tell others about the breach (39%);
  • C-Suite and SBOs recognize data security risk, but underestimate consequences as the majority of businesses (66%) confirm they are likely to report a data breach over the next five years;
  • The survey found that 52% of C-Suites, and 40% of SBO’s, report human error or accidental loss by employee/insider to be the main cause of a data breach.
  • There is a disconnect in perception between C-Suites and SBOs, and their employees around data protection practices. The survey found that 73% of C-Suites are very aware in terms of how to properly dispose hard drives, USB’s and other electronic devices, compared to 53% of employees. Forty-four per cent of SBOs are aware of such practices, compared to 37% of small business employees. 

As you can see, it is critical that businesses implement the proper employee training and introduce workplace policies, such as a Clean Desk Policy or a Shred-it All Policy, to help reduce the risk of a data breach from happening. 

To learn more about how Shred-it can protect your documents, please contact us to get a free quote and security risk assessment.