Organizational security and doxxing
The security risks of organizational doxxing.
These are risks every email marketer needs to understand. As collectors of data they are a major target for hackers and other bad people. Even worse, many marketers don’t collect valid data and risk implicating the wrong people if their data is ever stolen. I have repeatedly talked about incidents where people get mail not intended for them. I’ve talked about this before, in a number of posts talking about misdirected email. Consumerist, as well, has documented many incidents of companies mailing the wrong person with PII. Many of these stories end with the company not allowing the recipient to remove the address on the account because the user can’t prove they own the account.
I generally focus on the benefits to the company to verify addresses. There are definite deliverability advantages to making sure email address belongs to the account owner. But there’s also the PR benefits of not revealing PII attached to the wrong email address. With Ashley Madison nearly every article mentioned that the email address was never confirmed. But how many other companies don’t verify email addresses and risk losing personally damaging data belonging to non customers.
Data verification is so important. So very, very important. We’ve gone beyond the point where any big sender should just believe that the addresses users give them are accurate. They need to do it for their own business reasons and they need to do it to prevent incorrect PII from being leaked and shared.