Consumers and businesses are becoming increasingly concerned over data security and privacy. Consumers are concerned about identity theft, privacy, and the unethical, undisclosed use and sharing of their information. What keeps CEOs and CIOs up at night are potential data breaches and being suspected (or found guilty) of the illegal or unethical use or sharing of consumer information. A single incident can be costly in terms of breach-related expenses, regulatory fines, and the loss of customer trust, which may never be recovered.

Fueling these concerns are stories of high-profile data breaches and data-sharing scandals, such as the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal, along with a growing push for data protection and privacy legislation, such as the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Recognizing the importance of data security and privacy to consumers and businesses, we recently surveyed more than 1,000 U.S. consumers as part of our “2019 Consumer Sentiment Survey on Technology and Data Privacy.”

The survey results revealed three notable consumer sentiments:

  1. Before engaging with a company, most people surveyed want assurance that their data is protected and will not be used without their consent.
  2. The majority of people surveyed think that sharing consumer data is never a good thing.
  3. An overwhelming majority of people surveyed would like to have more control over how their non-personal data (such as age, gender, health, location, and income) is used.

Here are some of the more compelling results from our survey:

Before engaging with a company, how important is their data protection policy to you?

The takeaway: Before engaging with a company, 96% of consumers place some degree of importance on the company’s data protection policy.


Do you think sharing consumer data is ever a good thing?

The takeaway: The majority of those surveyed have a negative view of having their data shared with other organizations.


How much do you agree with the following statement: “I would like to have more control over how my non-personal data (age, gender, health, location, income, etc.) is used.”

The takeaway: The majority of people surveyed want more control over how their data is used.


As consumers become more aware of the growing threats to their personal information and privacy, we can expect that customer engagement will be driven increasingly by data protection policies. The companies that succeed in the data economy will take their customers’ – and prospective customers’ – data security and privacy concerns seriously and clearly communicate their data policies. Those that fail to do so will be at an increased risk of losing customer trust and engagement, in addition to facing the high costs of data breaches and the lack of transparency in how they use and share data.

At Snowflake, we take data security and privacy seriously. We provide our customers with the technologies to securely gather, process, store, and share data however they choose. Snowflake delivers the data protection required of an enterprise-class data warehouse:

  • Fine-grained, role-based access control
  • Always-on encryption of data stored in Snowflake
  • Automatic protection against accidental or malicious data loss
  • Virtual Private Cloud to use Snowflake without going over the public Internet
  • Continual updates to address evolving threats