A reputation for good security is now a vital factor when making a major purchase.

According to research from SafeNet UK, nearly a third of UK consumers say a company's reputation for good security is vital when they decide to make a purchase – and a further 60 per cent say that security is an important concern.

Chris Holland, global vice president for software rights management at SafeNet, said: “People value the security aspect of the vendor as highly as quality of service, they will see that if there has been a data breach or any bad press it is negative. This plays on their mind as they evaluate vendors.

“Traditionally this is an analysers market and security is as important as a good name, now people need to look at policy assets and intrusion.”

Almost half of the respondents said that they frequently check how their details will be protected before making a purchase, and a further third (33.8 per cent) said that they check how a company will protect their data when it involves giving their bank account details.

“Organisations must not underestimate the importance of good security on their reputation with customers. It is clearly absolutely vital that companies do their utmost to keep customer information safe, and that people know about it,” said Holland.