Most Singaporeans would spend more with firms that protect personal data

More than half (54%) of Singapore’s consumers would pay more to do business with an organisation that is committed to protecting their data privacy – surpassing Australia (44%), UK (49%) and Germany (41%) — new research from OpenText reveals.

The research was conducted through Google Surveys from April-May 2020. Commissioned by OpenText, 12,000 consumers including 1,000 from Singapore were anonymously surveyed globally. Other respondents were from the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Spain, Canada, Australia and Singapore.

Just 11% of Singapore consumers place trust in the ability of organisations to keep their personal data safe or private. This is despite increasingly stringent standards for data privacy as new regulations emerge worldwide, including the 2018 introduction of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

More than seven in every 10 (72%) of Singapore consumers “don’t have a clue” how many organisations use, store or have access to their personal data, including their email addresses, contact numbers and bank details. Yet more than a third (37%) say they are very aware of the laws that protect their personal data.

Almost one-third (32%) of Singapore consumers say they would proactively get in touch with an organisation to see how it is using their personal data or to check if it is storing their personal data in a compliant manner. Nearly one-fifth (17%) have already done so at least once.

“Digital is now central to almost every business interaction – generating more data for companies to manage and secure,” said Lou Blatt, SVP and CMO at OpenText. “This shift coupled with increased consumer data privacy expectations means organisations are now under pressure to ensure that their data privacy solutions can scale appropriately for this digital-first era.”

Close to two-thirds (64%) of Singapore consumers feel they know how to keep their own data private and secure on apps, email accounts and social media platforms, from using privacy settings to turning off geolocation. Yet, one in five (18%) believe keeping their data private and secure on apps, email accounts and social media is the responsibility of the app or company in question.

“Beyond potential fines, any organisation that fails to comply with data privacy laws risks losing the trust of their customers,” said Peter Bagge, VP of Asia Pacific at OpenText.