Don't Lose Customers Over a Data Breach

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Javvad Malik

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So your company has just suffered a data breach. You’ve done what you can, offered the public apology, sacrificed your CISO and promised everything will be alright.

But there’s a problem. Your competitors are taking advantage of your weakened state and swooping in on your customers, wooing them with offers too good to resist and promising them a life of security they deserve which you could never provide.

Is there anything you can do to stem your losses or do you sell up and resign yourself to job seekers allowance?

Well, before you throw in the towel, try some (or all) of these tips in order to not only keep your customers, but win some more, despite your breach.

Remember the good times

Remind them how long they’ve been a valuable customer for you and how you’ve looked after them.

You’ve provided customer support and reasonable charges. Remember the magically butterflies the first time they signed on the dotted line and entered a business relationship… re-capture those moments.

I’ll change

Just because you’ve suffered a breach today, doesn’t mean you’ll suffer a breach tomorrow. You’re trying your best to change and change takes time … and it’s something you can’t do alone.

In fact, in the time it takes them to switch to your competitor you’ll be a totally different company.

Find other customers

Brag to your existing customers how you’ve just signed on some new ones. This will keep them interested, they’ll wonder why others are joining you. It will also keep you occupied and less worried about losing the odd customer here and there.

We all make mistakes

Our breach which led to their data loss was a mistake never to be repeated. It was caused by one isolated system that doesn’t impact your operations at all… its just a technicality, a blip. Just shows we’re human too… just like you.

Let me meet him

OK so you can’t convince them to stay. But you want the best and want to know who you’re being dumped for. Sure there are loads of competitors out there who look the business, but are they really that nice to you in the long run?

How do you know they won’t tie them into unreasonable contracts and hidden charges? Be sure that they are the true ones before making that leap of faith.

It wasn’t me

Maybe, the only way is to just sort your own house out and not suffer or admit  a breach in the first place. It’s not the easy path but if done properly – i.e. a secure system is built rather than a compliant solution – then your customers need not look around…

Unless of course you’re over-charging them, or selling poor products and services – in which case security is the least of your worries.

Cross-posted from J4vv4d

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Allan Pratt, MBA Excellent post, Javvad - prevention for security breaches should be just as high as priority as disaster recovery prevention.
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