Americans least trust insurance brokers and financial advisors to keep their personal data safe, according to a new study set to be released Feb. 23.
Cloud-based encryption company Alertsec released findings from the study gauging Americans’ confidence that third-party contractors will keep their personal data safe and feelings about New York’s proposed cybersecurity regulation. The study, fielded to more than 1,000 American adults, determined that Americans least trust insurance brokers and financial advisors to keep their personal data safe and that a 26% expect their personal data to be compromised in 2017.
Nearly half of Americans expect New York’s proposed cybersecurity regulation to affect the rest of the U.S. If approved, as of March 1, 2017, New York State will impose significant increased cybersecurity requirements on financial service and insurance organizations.
Trust in financial advisors and insurance brokers is low
As stated earlier, more than a quarter of Americans (26%) expect that their personal data will be compromised this year. Of the third-party contractors who are not required to keep data encrypted, Americans say these are the top five most likely to compromise their personal data:
• Insurance broker: 9%
• Financial advisor: 9%
• Lawyer: 7%
• Management consultant: 6%
• CPA: 6%
American men are more concerned about having their data compromised by all third-party contractors than are women and are especially concerned about financial advisors (13% vs. 6%).
Generationally, Millennials (18-34 year olds) and Gen Xers (35-44 year olds) are also most worried about their personal data in the hands of financial advisors (12% and 9%, respectively), while Baby Boomers (45-64 year olds) and Seniors (age 65+) are most concerned about insurance brokers (8% and 10%, respectively).
Insurance companies need to step up cybersecurity practices
Not surprisingly, 55% of Americans — 63% of American men — think insurance brokers could use some help keeping their personal information safe.
Twenty-four percent say insurance companies could use some guidance on how best to protect information: 22% feel easy-to-use laptop encryption software is the answer; 18% say an encryption solution that won’t affect laptop performance is needed; and another 12% say solutions that don’t require a big investment would help.
Men are especially in favor of both easy-to-use encryption software (27%) and insurance companies getting guidance on how to protect information (28%).
New York is leading the way in cybersecurity
Nearly half of Americans (48%) expect that New York’s proposed cybersecurity regulation will impact the rest of the country. Twenty-three percent expect more states will adopt tougher cybersecurity protocols, and another 12% believe the new regulation will prompt the Federal Government to adopt tougher cybersecurity measures. Meanwhile, 13% fear the new regulation is useless without mandatory encryption.
Survey methodology: Alertsec commissioned this survey of more than 1,000 American adults from February 1-3, 2017, via Google Surveys. Google Surveys performs equal to or better than existing probability and non-probability based internet survey panels. A full description of the Google Surveys methodology can be found in this product overview.
About Alertsec: Alertsec, a Palo Alto-based laptop encryption company, provides cloud-based encryption software with 24/7 helpdesk support. No server, IT knowledge or training is needed, as everything is included in the subscription. The implemented encryption has the highest security certifications—FIPS and Common Criteria. Learn more at www.alertsec.com.
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