How loyal are companies when it comes to loyalty cards?
How many loyalty cards do you have in your wallet? Chances are you have more than one or two. Whether you’re doing your food shopping, buying new shoes, dining in a restaurant or merely grabbing a coffee, it seems like everyone wants to “sign you up.”
While it may seem like they’re doing you a great favour by offering you a freebie here, or a discount there, have you ever thought about what’s in it for them?
What you may not know about loyalty cards
OK, so having a loyalty card may get you some cool discounts, and accumulating supermarket points can help you get a few little extras in your shopping basket. But what really happens behind the scenes after you’ve signed on the dotted line?
In order to get a promotional offer, you have to share some personal details. Once the store has your data, however, it uses it to target you for particular offers, enticing you to spend even more money. Also, after you’ve begun using your card at the checkout, it gets to know your spending habits, the products you like and how often you buy.
Are companies looking after your valuable data?
If every company has a legal requirement to look after your data, then why are we hearing about so many high-profile data breaches? And, if super-tech powerhouses like Facebook are failing to protect personal data, then how is the average high street businesses supposed to fair?
In fact, your personal data is extremely valuable. That’s why businesses want it. That’s why hackers and any would-be cyber-thieves want it. What you may not realise, is that companies will even share and sell your personal data to other organisations. Talk about a lack of loyalty!
What can you do about it?
Get to the bottom of the three things:
- How does the company collect your data?
- How do they store your data?
- What are your rights in relation to the data?
If you’re ever in doubt, refuse to sign. Understanding privacy policies may seem like a dull chore, but maybe sharpening your wits in this way can prevent you from being harmed in the future.
Does this mean you should cut up your entire collection of loyalty cards? It’s probably not the worst idea. What is important, however, is that you weigh up the benefits of getting discounts with giving up your privacy for each card. If a discount is deemed worthy, then keep the card. If you do find yourself with 20+ loyalty cards and desperate to sign up at the first sight of a bargain, then maybe it could be a sign that you’re losing some control over your financial situation.
Maybe you’re need of some credit card debt help or some other form of hardship help …. or if it’s more serious than that, we’re here for you. At Life After Debt, we understand how tough things can get, which is why we will always treat you in a dignified fashion, and never judge. Call us today for your free debt assessment.