Brand abuse: prevention over cure?

48% of U.S. consumers say misuse of their personal information has caused them to lose trust in a brand during the pandemic.

Recently, we’ve seen a lot of brands with damaged reputations attempting to rebuild their image. Apologies are issued, responsibility is taken, and promises are made to do better. But wouldn’t it be better for everyone if the trust was never broken in the first place?

Admittedly, with the advent of the internet, protecting a brand’s ever-growing attack surface can be difficult. But, the advantages of stopping brand abuse before it happens are worth the investment.

Rebuilding trust is difficult

Customers who have lost trust in a brand are likely to reduce the amount they interact with and purchase from the organization. In fact, 70% of European customers are likely to stop purchasing from a brand altogether if their trust is broken. 

Trust is also important for partners in your supply chain. Creating and cultivating partner relationships takes time. Losing this trust can set you back years in that relationship, or even worse, end it altogether. 

It is possible to rebuild trust. But, doing so takes a lot of time and resources. In the short term, sales will suffer, with customers spending less or avoiding the brand altogether.

Value preservation vs value creation

“Experienced gladiators when entering the Colosseum in ancient Rome intuitively understood that their chances of victory and survival were enhanced if they were in possession of both a sword (offense) and a shield (defense). Similarly, a prudent board in the 21st century should also intuitively understand that their chances of successfully and sustainably navigating the corporate minefield is enhanced if they are in possession of both value creation and value preservation capabilities.”

Sean Lyons, Value Preservation & Corporate Defense Author, Pioneer, and Thought Leader

Every business wants to generate value, but what about preserving it? 

An effective brand protection strategy is in itself a form of value preservation. It’s important for businesses to protect the brand they’ve built, keep control of what they’ve created, and safeguard the investment they’ve made in it.

Automation can make online brand protection easier

So, what steps should organizations take to protect their brand?

Some forms of online brand abuse like lookalike websites can seem almost impossible to combat. New impersonation domains spring up every day, even a large team couldn’t find all of them manually. 

A new phishing website is published and goes live every 20 seconds.

Thankfully, while digitalization has opened up new avenues for brand abuse, it also offers new methods for defending against it. Specialized brand protection software can scan the internet for you, uncovering and disarming impersonation domains before they reach your customers. 

It’s also possible to employ software to help secure your brand’s email ecosystem. Implementing DMARC with a policy of p=reject prevents attackers from impersonating your email address. Additionally, advanced threat detection and intelligence can help alert your employees to inbound phishing attempts. This greatly reduces your risk of losing customer trust due to a data breach. 

How Red Sift can help protect your brand.

At Red Sift, we enable security-first organizations to successfully communicate with and ensure the trust of their employees, vendors, and customers. Our integrated email security and brand protection platform can help block outbound phishing attacks, analyze the security of inbound emails, and provide domain impersonation defense for company-wide threat protection. 

To find out more about how our platform can contribute to your organization’s brand protection strategy, download our eBook today.


Sophia Martin

13 Oct. 2022



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