How To Protect Customer Privacy

You've worked hard to secure those sales. You've gathered the necessary information from you clients in order to provide them with excellent customer service and products. Now, how do you protect that valuable information? With the advent of customer relationship management software, the number of instances where a customer's information is stolen, sold, or swapped is exponentially increasing. The easiest way to protect your customer's privacy is by creating a customer privacy policy. A customer privacy policy should cover 5 important issues: type of information gathered, what their information is going to be used for, who this information could possibly be sold or given to, a choice for the customer to deny or consent to the use of their information, and reassurance that any complaints that the customer has about the way their information is handled will be handled swiftly and judiciously.

Protecting customer privacy is a very important part of customer service. When you gather information from your customers, you usually get the basic information such as name, address, and phone number. You may also get more personal information such as social security numbers, credit card numbers or bank account numbers to process payments. Depending on the type of industry, you may also collect insurance information, health information, or other sensitive information. Your customer needs to know why you are collecting this information. Furthermore, your customer needs to know if you plan to make their information available to other companies, and what information you intend to share. If they feel that their information is too personal to share, or they don't want to be contacted by other companies with sales pitches, they need to know that they have the ability to "opt-out", which means to deny your request to share their information. If a customer agrees with having their information shared, they need to know that if they have a complaint about the companies that are contacting them, that their complaints would be treated with urgency and respect.

Having a customer privacy policy in place will ensure that your customers understand the reasons for providing you with their personal information and would make your intentions for their information transparent. Protecting the privacy of your customers ensures that your customers will retain faith in your company and your product or service, and they will reward your commitment to their privacy concerns by continuing a long relationship with you and introducing other potential customers to your business.


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