Retailers, consumers and prices
Worried about the safety of your personal information? On second thought, maybe you’re not — if you shop with your American Express card, surf eBay or use an IBM system.
Those three companies are consumers’ picks for the top most trusted when it comes to protecting their customers’ privacy, according to a survey by TRUSTe, a consumer privacy protection organization, and the Ponemon Institute, an independent research group.
Consumers reported that identity theft is the No. 1 factor influencing their view of how companies handle privacy concerns, with only 45 percent of respondents saying they felt they had control over how their personal information was used or shared. That’s down from 56 percent two years ago.
The worries over data security are real — companies from discount retailer TJX Cos to Bank of New York Mellon Corp have had major data breaches compromising the personal information of millions of consumers.
The top ten list is rounded out by Amazon.com, Johnson & Johnson, the U.S. Postal Service (which shares the No. 6 spot with Hewlett Packard), Procter & Gamble, Apple, Nationwide, and Charles Schwab.
The survey, now in its fifth year, polled nearly 6,500 U.S. adults to determine their view of the most trustworthy companies and brands when it comes to protecting personal information.
Companies including Disney, AOL and Dell made it to the top 20 list, with Yahoo, FedEx, Facebook and Verizon joining that group for the first time since 2004, when the Ponemon Institute began conducting research on the topic. It was also the first time for Apple, at No 8.