Customer data offers both opportunities and risks. Using it effectively enhances decision-making, boosts personalisation efforts, and fuels innovation and growth. However, mishandling this data can undo any gains made. If not treated with care, customer data can swiftly become a liability, endangering your customers and exposing your business to financial and reputational harm.

Cybercrime strikes Australian businesses every six minutes

Maintaining your customer’s trust is closely linked to protecting their data. Unauthorised disclosure of personal information can severely undermine customer confidence in your organisation’s reliability. And with cyberattacks happening every six minutes across Australia1, the threat of a data breach is an ever-present danger.

In the financial year 2022-23, reported cybercrime incidents to the Australian Cyber Security Centre surged by 23%2. The majority of these reports came from small businesses, where the average self-reported cost of cybercrime has more than doubled compared to the previous year3.

With data breaches becoming increasingly inevitable, identity theft and cybercrime are also on the rise. Identity theft occurs when unauthorised access is gained to personal information, like name, date of birth, address or identity documents. Cybercriminals can exploit even a single piece of personal data to construct false profiles or replica identities for financial gain. Over half of identity theft victims report financial losses4, and it takes an average of 13 hours for customers to rectify the aftermath of these crimes5.

With Australian business leaders ranking cybercrime as the number one current and predicted future risk6, there’s a growing demand for heightened protections over the privacy and security of personal information. Establishing a robust data security posture is increasingly crucial for upholding customer trust, managing risk, and mitigating the financial and legal repercussions of data breaches. However safeguarding data demands a level of cybersecurity investment, resources, controls and processes that many small- to medium-sized businesses find beyond their reach.

Fortunately, there’s a solution that removes the necessity for companies to collect or retain customer data while still harnessing the benefits data offers. It’s called Data as a Service, and it is bringing about a paradigm shift in how organisations access and manage data to drive business outcomes.

What is Daas?

Data as a service (DaaS) is a data management model that offers businesses instant access to curated, real-time data streams. Much like Software as a Service (SaaS) delivers software without requiring on-premise installation or maintenance, partnering with a DaaS provider allows businesses to leverage data as an asset without handling the underlying infrastructure.

DaaS providers handle data collection, cleansing, processing and security, enabling businesses to access accurate, validated, consumer-permissioned data on individuals. Similar to conducting a credit check during onboarding, companies can retrieve needed information in seconds from their provider’s data sets without having to collect any personal information from customers.

If your business retains minimal or no customer data, the risk of data exposure in the face of a cyber attack is greatly reduced.

Maintain customer trust with DaaS

As a DaaS provider, Equifax is well-practised in securing and safeguarding data for compliance, continuity, and quality. A global leader in data security, we implement advanced security measures for our extensive data assets, following globally recognised best practices in data management. These include 24/7 in-house monitoring of physical and logical security controls, geocentric cloud data storage, and top-tier malware and anti-virus detection and response. Data is protected both in transit and at rest using industry-standard authentication and role-based access controls.

Equifax has committed significant investments in security and technology to establish advanced and effective cybersecurity programs, consistently surpassing major industry benchmarks for four consecutive years. Our security posture score continues to exceed averages in the Technology and Financial Services industry, even as we combat over 12 million cyber threats daily. Learn more about Equifax cybersecurity leadership in our 2023 Security Annual Report.

Tailored datasets to business needs

DaaS offers businesses access to data sets tailored to their industry or specific business function. This might include identity verification against trusted sources for onboarding, risk mitigation through credit scores and market trends, or enhancing customer experiences with demographic and purchasing behaviour data.

Regardless of the use case, DaaS delivers a scalable and cost-effective solution for unlocking the potential of data assets in real-time and in user-friendly formats. With our extensive coverage of trusted, verified and validated data, Equifax empowers businesses to harness data for decision-making and competitive advantage.

Our foundation of consistent, current, reliable and diverse data has been helping companies over the past sixty-plus years reach critical business goals and milestones. Our data-matching and record-linking capabilities rank among the highest in the industry, enabling businesses to generate a consolidated and clear view of customers without managing their own data infrastructure.

Contact Equifax to discover how DaaS can help your business leverage the benefits of data without the complexities of data management.

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1 ASD Cyber Threat Report, 2022-2023
2 ASD Cyber Threat Report, 2022-2023
3 ASD Cyber Threat Trends for Australian businesses and organisations, 2022-2023
4 Australian Bureau of Statistics, Personal Fraud, Key Statistics for the five years prior to 2021-22
5 The Aust Institute of Criminology (AIC), Australian cybercrime survey, Identity crime and misuse in Australia 2023
6 Top 5 issues facing Australian business leaders in 2024, KPMG

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