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Fewer than half of event planners have 'adequate' data security measures

Survey from Eventsforce reveal only four in 10 planners feel they have acceptable security policies

Pictured: A survey from Eventsforce reveal 80 per cent of event planners say data security is a top priority, yet less than half feel they have adequate systems in place

Eight in 10 event planners say data security is a top priority for 2016, yet only 40 per cent feel they have adequate security policies in place, new research from Eventsforce has shown.

The study, conducted among 50 agencies in the UK and US, revealed that event planners need to do more to make their delegate data safe, including changing their password more frequently. Data security has moved up the agenda after more than 50 Starwood hotels were hit by a data security breach, while Hyatt revealed it had been affected by malware in 2015.

“There have been a number of high-profile data breaches over the last year and though there have been no major incidents involving the events industry, it is something we need to prepare ourselves for," said Steve Baxter, CTO of Eventsforce. "Events deal with highly sensitive customer information, including names, emails, telephone numbers, employment information, disabilities and so on. Ensuring this data is kept safe is critical - not just for delegates, but for those organisations storing this information.”

“The survey exposes some key areas like password hygiene, delegate payments and regulatory compliance where event planners need to put greater attention to in order to prevent data from getting into the wrong hands.”

As part of Eventsforce's findings, 81 per cent of planners say don't change their passwords as often as they should (more than once a year) and one-third say they have shared their passwords with others.

  • Philip Haines of Hainesnet 17/03/2016

    Good to see this issue being aired again. It should also be connected to privacy law, and in particular the implication of the decision of the European Court of Justice in October 2015 which ruled the Safe Harbor framework invalid. Put simply, Safe Harbor was a self-declaration mechanism used by US companies to state that data was stored in accordance with EU data privacy standards This is important as many agencies are either US owned or use software providers who host their clients data in the US. Agencies and their clients should ascertain the facts that pertain to their own situation, check supplier contracts and in simple terms ensure that EU customer data is stored within the EU.

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