As more and more users throughout the world are enticed by free online services, it is a fact they do not consider what they are trading off in this exchange. This point was illustrated in the movie "The Kingsman: The Secret Service". Without disclosing too much of the movie, the villain played by Samuel L. Jackson is an internet billionaire known for his philanthropy. He announces a giveaway of SIM cards, granting free cellular and Internet access to everyone around the world. Not surprisingly consumers flock to stores to get their cards, but never ask or inquire on the privacy or security implications. Unknown to everyone his plan is to broadcast a signal to the SIM cards around the world, causing everyone to become uncontrollably violent and kill each solving the problem of global warming and over population. While I am not suggesting any of the recent security and privacy exploits and practices are as sinister as was what was depicted in the movie, it serves a stark reminder of the need for self-regulation, supply chain integrity, adherence to security best practices and clear and concise consumer notices.
Towards this goal, today OTA is announcing an update to the 2015 Online Trust Audit & Honor Roll methodology. All sites from banking, ecommerce and content, to social and government and non-profits should reexamine their privacy, brand protection and security practices. Testing beginning in late April and results will be published in early June. See if your site can make the grade.