OTA awards most trustworthy websites

tick, survey, businessHealthPost, Trade Me, New Zealand Post and Xero have been named on the Online Trust Alliance (OTA) Australia and NZ Honour Roll.

To succeed, the companies had to distinguish themselves as responsible stewards of customer data at all levels of their organisation in the 2014 Australia and NZ Online Trust Audit.

Excellence was achieved in: domain, brand, and consumer protection; data protection, privacy and transparency; and site, server and infrastructure security.

The audit examined 150 regional consumer and government websites, with 14 per cent of them achieving the OTA’s ANZ Honour Roll.

To be considered for evaluation, websites had to meet a combination of factors, including consumer site traffic within NZ and Australia, prevalence of past brand jacking or phishing exploits and industry sector leadership.

150 sites were selected for evaluation, and 21 were selected for the Honour Roll, four of which were NZ companies.

“Having our customers trust us is as crucial to HealthPost as great products, customer service and ethics. To be named to the first-ever ANZ Online Trust Audit and Honour Roll for online privacy and data protection practices is an honour. The OTA’s recognition of our work has encouraged us to implement yet more of the online privacy and data protection best practices. We believe that people have a right to expect that the organisations who they share their personal information with online will take that responsibility seriously, ” Abel Butler, HealthPost CEO, said.

“I applaud the New Zealand companies that achieved Honour Roll status, including NZITF members TradeMe and Xero. This is no small achievement. Working with NZITF, OTA is leading the way to help organisations see the value in consumer and brand protection initiatives,” Barry Brailey, New Zealand Internet Task Force chair, said.

Craig Spiezle, OTA executive director and president, commended the companies that demonstrated a commitment towards respecting consumer privacy and safeguarding sensitive data.

“On the other hand, those that failed demonstrated a penchant for operational oversights, mistakes and an apparent lack of attention to consumer protection. This report serves as a wake-up call for consumers to think twice about where they shop, bank and click. It also stresses how important it is for businesses to be more vigilant in their security and privacy practices.”

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