Only a third trust council data security, says poll

Nearly a third of people do not trust their local councils to implement a secure data storage programme, according to research by Zurich Municipal.

Zurich polled 2,000 UK citizens to investigate public confidence in council data security, one of the major concerns is when councils are outsourcing data.

The research found that only 10% of those surveyed believe that councils would be able to counter a cyber-attack and almost a third have “no faith” that their local authority has the capability to secure key data.

The lack of public faith in councils to implement a comprehensive data security programme contrasts with surveys which found that over 95% of chief executives in local government had confidence in their organisations’ ability to deal with data issues.

Over half of the respondents said they would not trust their local authority to secure data following an incident.

Outsourcing of services was a key concern, the survey found, with around 75% saying that it puts users’ personal data at risk and less the a fifth of respondents said that they would trust the third party groups to deal with information safely.

Director of public sector at Zurich Municipal, Andrew Jepp, said: “more and more people are now accessing council services online and via mobile, but public trust in these services is dangerously low.

Councils need to better demonstrate and communicate how they are proactively managing these risks to the public.

Not only will this help to convince the public that online services are safe to use, but it will also help to avoid a potential crisis of confidence that could do irreparable damage to their reputation.”

Local government suffered approximately 243 data breaches last year.

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