Top 3 Tips to Safeguard Customer Data
Tara Kelly | July 31, 2019
Insurance companies can serve customers better when they have access to accurate data and use it to send personalized, relevant messages that deliver value to customers, and customers are becoming increasingly pragmatic about sharing data — 58 percent are willing to share personal information under the right circumstances. They understand the bargain they make when they give companies access to information: “I’ll share my data with you if you protect it and use it in ways that benefit me.”
Opt-in programs featuring telematics devices for insured drivers are one example, but there are many other instances where insurers collect customer data. Gathering mobile phone contact and social media information can enable proactive communication for a variety of purposes, and it can be beneficial to both companies and policyholders when they establish strong, trust-based relationships.
While consumers are attracted to the potential benefits of data sharing, they’re also understandably concerned about the risks to their personal information. In fact, 81 percent of consumers say they’ve become more concerned about how companies use their data over the past year, according to an IBM study. So, as an insurance technology professional, if you want to facilitate a mutually beneficial data exchange with more customers, maintaining robust data security — and letting customers know you’re protecting their data — is a must. Here’s how:
- Cover the basics: Insurance companies are a top target for hackers because of the sensitive nature and potential monetary value of the information they collect. Accordingly, insurers spend a great deal on cybersecurity. But employees often prove to be a weak link, falling for phishing scams that can make the most robust firewalls and anti-malware measures ineffective. That’s why it’s a good idea for insurance companies and their technology vendors to provide employee training on how to detect spoof URLs and fake websites before they click on a link that allows a hacker to steal their credentials. Measures like these are obvious, but major data breaches are often traced back to a simple attack vector like phishing, so cover the basics.
- Ensure architecture safety: Insurance technology leverages APIs to improve service for customers and the bottom line for insurers. Even companies without a comprehensive big data strategy can use APIs to connect single-function programs and applications to enable data transmissions that make sending personalized messages for customers possible. But while these techniques can allow insurers to realize the full value of customer data, API use can also increase risk exposure if it’s not handled with care on a secure architecture. For that reason, it’s critical to use an architecture that lets the company perform API functions that harness customer data while minimizing exposure of information.
- Practice what you preach: Insurers that offer cybersecurity policies to other companies often include requirements for coverage, such as mandatory annual training for staff. The insurance industry has been praised for improving security by demanding that the businesses it covers reduce vulnerabilities. But insurance companies and their tech vendors don’t always practice what they preach. For example, some still rely on usernames and passwords for access to sensitive data. It’s a good practice to implement tougher measures like three-factor authentication. Regular audits can also improve security and keep policyholder data safer.
When insurance companies combine data and technologies like APIs to personalize service, they can build stronger relationships and improve policyholder “stickiness.” As more consumers use devices like AI-enabled personal assistants to shop and get information online, insurers who want to compete and win in the space must handle data effectively to continue the conversation on new platforms.
Forward-thinking insurers are already finding that customers are receptive when they consistently deliver value in exchange for data. The rapid growth of telematics demonstrates that, with auto-related data monetization program value expected to reach $750 billion by 2030, according to McKinsey. But building trust is the first step. When customers know you take their security seriously, they’re more likely to share data with you. Data then allows you to improve service and outreach at every step in the customer journey. That’s a win for you and your customers.
About Tara Kelly
A serial innovator, published author and founder of SPLICE Software, Tara Kelly (@TKtechnow) is passionate about technology’s potential to change lives for the better. She has consistently channeled that belief into developing technologies that enhance operations, enable better service delivery, and improve the customer experience. This has resulted in creating three customer experience companies and turning an innovative idea into a patented, proprietary technology (US Patent Number 9348812) that harnesses data streams to create personalized, automated messages.
Kelly – an open source activist and recognized user experience designer – served as a board member for the International Board for Voice User Interface Design, the Canadian Cloud Council, Technology Alberta and is a member of the Entrepreneurs Organization. Kelly’s expertise combined with tenacity, understanding of market trends, and strong communication skills has allowed her to create dynamic solutions and successful teams; not only in her businesses, but also as a community leader on volunteer boards including Food for the Sol, EO Water Walk, and Special Olympics Ontario. Kelly shares these experiences – and her goal of creating a healthy, humane work environment – in the recently published book, Our Journey To Corporate Sanity: Transformational Stories from the Frontiers of 21stCentury Leadership.
- Electronic Chat with Chuck Wilson
- ITA, InsNerds Collaborate to Enhance ITA LIVE 2020 Content and Coverage
- How SMBs Can Compete in Digital Ecosystems in the 2020s
- 4 Ways Insurance Can Prepare for New Data Privacy Laws
- Brewer Lane Ventures Launches and Hires Insurtech Vet Martha Notaras as Managing Partner
- 2020 GIA Cohort Launches on January 14
- The November/December 2019 ITA Pro is here!
- Electronic Chat with Joshua Snead
- Electronic Chat with Wendy Aarons-Corman
- Simplifying the Move to a Third-party Print Provider
- Take a Business-Driven Approach to Continuous Improvement for Core Systems and Processes
- Electronic Chat with Ron Glozman
- Guidewire’s Data Guru Mike Byam on How Insurers are Using Internal and Third-Party Data
- Electronic Chat with Russ Bostick
- Electronic Chat with Rock Schindler
- Electronic Chat with John Siegman
- Electronic Chat with Martin Burlingame
- Insurtech Landscape 2019: Top 5 Takeaways
- Grinnell Mutual Tackles Massive Transformation -- in Stride
- A Candid Conversation with Paul Mang
- SageSure Insurance Managers Improved Competitiveness by Consolidating Payments to a Single Digital Platform
- Digital Does Matter in Insurance-- And Insurers are Missing the Mark
- The 22nd-Century Insurer: Taking a Cloud-First IT Approach
- The September/October 2019 issue of ITA PRO magazine is now available in digital format here:
- ITA Pro Magazine May/June 2019
- Spotlight on the 2019 IASA Conference
- ValueMomentum Selects Erie as Site of Regional Development Center
- Capgemini and Majesco Become Alliance Partners
- Electronic Chat with Dr. Dan Shoham
- Electronic Chat with Todd Greenbaum
- Martha Notaras: The “Outsider” with an Amazing Inside View
- Electronic Chat with Larissa Tosch
- Martha Notaras Will Join ITA LIVE 2019 as a Keynote Speaker
- Five Things to Consider When Evaluating Your Cyber Risk
- ITA Pro Magazine, January/February 2019
- Synergy Between Insurers' IT and Analytics Teams Key to Operationalizing Insights, Says Novarica
- Major Ransomware Attack Could Hit U.S. with $89B In Economic Damages
- ITA Announces 1st of Three Keynote Speakers at ITA LIVE 2019
- Electronic Chat with Jeroen Morrenhof
- Legacy Systems Are Dead. Really? Don't Count On It.
- Now Accepting Nominations for the 2019 ITA Bridge Awards
- It's time to register for ITA LIVE!
- Registration is Now Open for ITA LIVE 2019!
- What to Expect from a Digital Experience Platform Implementation
- ITA Pro Magazine September Edition is Now Available
- It's National IT Professionals Day
- Save the Date for ITA-LIVE 2019
- OneShield Software and UrbanStat Work Together to Improve Real-Time Analytics and Risk Decision-Making
- ITA LIVE 2019 - SAVE THE DATE!
- Insurance Technology Association Announces New Editor-in-Chief
- August 2018 Edition ITA Pro Magazine is Now Available
- Enterprise Architecture in an Agile World
- Top 10 Tips for Securing Your Mobile Devices and Sensitive Client Data
- Industry Insight: 4 Global Insurance Trends in Digital, Data, Content Services and Security
- Diving Deeper into Prioritizing Your Strategic Digital investments
- Why Content Rules
- How Mass Personalization Will Open the Small Business Benefits Market
- At Year End 2017, Will Your Organization Be Protected from Cyber Risks?
- Do Insurance Bots Dream of Mitigating Risk?
- Conditioned to Respond
- Managing & Mobilizing Insurance Data in a Connected World
- Race to the Finish Line
- New Tools, New Opportunities in Claims
- ITA LIVE: Reaching Insurance Industry Crossroads
- Advice to Insurance IT Leaders: Keep Your Eye on the Ball
- New Date, Venue for ITA LIVE 2017
- Guidewire Makes Major Push to Small and Midtier Market by Acquiring ISCS
- Insurance Disruption is Happening Right Now
- Insurity Adds Strategic Investment Partner, General Atlantic
- Beyond Transformation: The Convergence of Finance, Risk, and Actuarial Functions
- The Rapid Evolution of Consumer Protection Regulation
- Talent Hunt: Finding, Attracting, Retaining Top People
- Insurers Flexing Their Distribution Models
- Technology Driving Disruption in Insurance
- Fear of ‘Next Bubble’ Challenges Life, Annuity Carriers
- Technology Allows Commercial Lines Insurers to Stand Out
- Single Sign-on Viewed as Biggest Tech Challenge for Agencies
- ISCS Observes 20th Anniversary; Scurto Predicts Major Changes Ahead
- Policyholders and Their First Impressions
- Progressive Making Progress on the UBI Front
- High and Dry: Insurers Search for Disaster Recovery Plans
- Insurers Sign The (Un)Dotted Line
- Reflections of a Retired Insurance CIO
- Mobile Device Management Just One Answer to BYOD Issue
- Lessons from GEICO and Progressive on Winning the Critical Buying Stage
- You Are a Target for a Cyber Attack
- Web-based Systems are the Next Evolution in Claims Technology
- Gaining a “Wow” Experience from Web Users
- Time to Shift from Business/IT Alignment to Business/IT Alliance
- Healthcare Insurers Changing to Consumer Model
- Organization is the Key for Selecting Software Vendors
- Analysts Expound on the Needs of the Mid-tier Insurance Market
- Finding the Cure for Obamacare’s Website
- New Software Solutions Benefit Insurers on the Inside and Outside
- Products, Market Impede Investment in Systems for Life Insurers
- Combatting Cyber Threats: Predict, Prevent, Persist
- The Future of Telematics Heads Beyond Insurance
- The Shame in Cyber Security Lapses
- Building Policy Administration Systems for the Future
- Insurers Look Into The Eyes of Their Policyholders
- It’s a New Dawn for the ITA
INSURANCE IT NEWS
- n2uitive Secures $1.3 Million in Funding to Fuel Growth in InsurTech Market
- Plug and Play Start-Up Accelerator and the Society of Actuaries Working Together to Inspire Innovative and Financially-Sound Technologies in Insurance
- Insurance Agency Mergers & Acquisitions Hit Record Level in 2019, OPTIS Partners’ Report Says
- Boost Insurance Expands Infrastructure-as-a-Service Platform with Suite of Products
- Sapiens Complete Its Acquisition of sum.cumo English
- Cowbell Cyber and Advisen Announce Data Partnership
- INSHUR Partners with Drivers Benefits to Provide Rideshare Drivers With Benefits Access
- Ed Rochfort Brings Successful UBI Track Record to IMS as Chief Product Officer
The Email Chat is a regular feature of the ITA Pro magazine and website. We send a series of questions to an insurance IT leader in search of thought-provoking responses on important issues facing the insurance industry.
ITA LIVE 2020
ITA LIVE 2020 –SAVE THE DATE!
April 5th – 7th, 2020
The Diplomat Resort
Become a member today to receive updates – www.itapro.org/MR
BLOGS AND COLUMNS
You have surely heard it said that small businesses are the growth engine for America. Today, the phrase has a special ring to it for benefits... READ MORE
With stagnant growth and lingering low interest rates, the life insurance industry faces a challenging future... READ MORE
Finding insurance carriers willing to write commercial lines risks has always been a challenge for producers... READ MORE
As Guidewire Software prepares for the start of Connections, its 11th annual user conference that begins on Nov. 2, Brian Desmond, chief marketing... READ MORE
Case study of how a Fortune 500 employee benefits provider serving 35 million insureds throughout the U.S. and Europe transitioned from in-house... READ MORE
- Vendor Views