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Much Discomfort Around Remote Work Tools

By October 22, 2020 No Comments

Respondents don’t feel that remote tools will protect their privacy.

People care very much about data privacy, and they’re willing to act on it, according to the latest Cisco report.

The vendor on Wednesday published results from its 2020 Consumer Privacy Survey. Cisco conducted the study in June, querying more than 2,600 people representing 12 countries.

Cisco made four conclusions in its privacy report.

First, the pandemic-induced shift to remote work has created additional privacy challenges. Of the 81% of respondents that are working remotely, 60% expressed moderate to high concern with their remote tools.

Source: 2020 Cisco Consumer Privacy Study

Two in five (40%) respondents said COVID-19 increased the importance of data privacy.

cisco privacy study 2

Source: 2020 Cisco Consumer Privacy Study

“While some organizations had enabled remote interactions before the pandemic, many were challenged to find or develop the digital tools and scale needed to support this shift,” the report authors wrote. “People were asked to interact and share information remotely, and our survey indicates that they were not very confident that their data was properly protected.”

Second, the study highlighted that consumers often turn away from businesses because of data privacy. These consumers – dubbed “privacy actives” – accounted for 29% of respondents. Almost half (45%) of these privacy actives choose to sever ties in longstanding business relationships. However, another 45% said they’d consider returning to the company if it mended its privacy policy.

The Legal Side

Third, consumers want governments to ensure their data protection. Indeed, 40% of them expect national governments to play the leading role in data protection laws.

cisco privacy

Source: 2020 Cisco Consumer Privacy Study

Respondents also expressed largely positive sentiments about existing privacy laws, including GDPR in the European Union.

California recently unveiled one of the first comprehensive state data privacy laws in the U.S.

Lastly, a transparency problem exists. For the respondents that reported privacy concerns, 78% of them did so because they can’t figure out the company’s actual data policy.

Jang, Harvey_Cisco

Cisco’s Harvey Jang

“Privacy is much more than just a compliance obligation. It is a fundamental human right and business imperative that is critical to building and maintaining customer trust,” Cisco chief privacy officer Harvey Jang said. “The core privacy and ethical principles of transparency, fairness and accountability will guide us in this new, digital-first world.”

In other news, Cisco this week unveiled a new router series. The Catalyst 8000 family provides WAN edge devices that cater to a multicloud, distributed data environment.

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