In their keynote presentations for FICO World 2014, Will Lansing, CEO of FICO, and independent cybersecurity expert Theresa Payton called on businesses to do more to protect customer data. Noting the high-profile data breaches of the past year, both speakers told the 1,000+ FICO World participants that the effort to keep data secure needs to involve the highest ranks of the organization, the most advanced technologies and the active involvement of a business’s customers in detecting and stopping fraud.
Their remarks came as the US works to adopt chip-based controls for payment cards, a movement President Obama called critical in a speech last month at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The so-called EMV standard is being adopted by October 2015, though a report last month by the Payments Security Task Force projects that less than half of US merchant terminals will be enabled for EMV chip technology by the end of 2015.
Citing the conference’s theme of The New Customer Imperative, Lansing said consumers view data protection as fundamental to any business relationship. He urged business leaders to step up their technical defences and also give customers the ability to join the fight against fraud. He cited recent FICO consumer research which showed that as many as 60 percent of consumers would be interested in exercising specific controls over their payment card’s usage.
“Consumers can be the weakest link when it comes to protecting their finances from fraud,” Lansing said. “What if we gave consumers more control over their own protection? What if we made it easier for them to set their own limits on their card spending, and basically write their own rules to protect themselves from fraud?”
Payton, who served as the White House Chief Information Officer from 2006 to 2008 and is a security, risk, and fraud consultant as CEO of Fortalice Solutions, said businesses need to take responsibility not only for their own defences, but for those in their supply chain. She noted research from IBM showing that only 28% of companies “very strenuously” require their vendors, partners, and supply chain to match levels of risk control. “We need to change the CEO conversation around cybersecurity,” said Payton, whose latest book is Privacy in the Age of Big Data. “The question isn’t, what are you doing to avoid being hacked, it’s when you do get hacked, what are you going to do about it?”
FICO World 2014 focuses on Big Data analytics and decision management strategies for acquiring, serving and retaining customers profitably. The conference continues through Friday.