Marketing Daily has a great article on brand security. Once brands were built on great products with well-communicated features and benefits. That’s no longer enough: “now security, transparency and privacy are required ingredients for great brands.”
During the Wikileaks crisis, brands like Mastercard, Visa and Paypal were threatened by “hacktivists.” We pointed out the massive symbolic power of brands meant they are easily co-opted for attention to dramatize all kinds of issues. As Marketing Daily points out, brands are also stewards of our valuable personal information. They must safeguard that information suffer a trust deficit that could limit growth (see article on Facebook, trust and their expansion into email), or leave them vulnerable to competitors (when Western Union became associated with fraud Paypal slipped into the payments space).
Brands need to put security front and center before they become targets. For big brands, it is a matter of when not if.