TRUSTe and Ponemon Institute Announce Results of 2007 Most Trusted Companies for Privacy Study

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Overall and Industry-by-Industry Rankings Rate Top Performing Commercial and Government Organizations

TRUSTe and the Ponemon Institute have announced the results of the 2007 Most Trusted Companies for Privacy Study, an annual evaluation of how consumers perceive organizations that collect and manage their personal information. The 2007 Most Trusted Companies for Privacy Study ranks companies and federal agencies industry-by-industry as well as providing a list of overall top performing companies.

TRUSTe and the Ponemon Institute are hosting a webinar discussing the Most Trusted Companies for Privacy Study from 1:00pm - 2:00pm EDT/10:00am - 11:00am PDT today. To register for the live event, visit

Overall, the top three rated companies for privacy trust in 2007 are, in order, American Express, Charles Schwab, and IBM. In 2006 the top three companies were American Express, Amazon, and Procter & Gamble. Previous years' winners have included E-Loan, Hewlett-Packard, and eBay.

"We're very pleased by this recognition of Schwab's commitment to respect our clients' privacy; it's essential to be good stewards of our clients' information as well as their assets," stated Janet Chapman, chief privacy officer, The Charles Schwab Corporation.

"At IBM, one of our core values is trust and personal responsibility in all relationships. This basic tenet defines how 355,000 IBMers interact with another as well as with partners, clients and communities around the world and on behalf of those IBMers I'm grateful that our commitment to that value has been recognized by TRUSTe and independent researchers," said Yim Chan, chief privacy officer, IBM Canada. "At IBM, we see a new understanding by business of the value of trust, increasingly crucial as collaborations and interdependences become the defining characteristics of business - and all human activities."

"Analyzing the public's perception of companies' privacy practices and announcing top-performing companies in this way is part of TRUSTe's mission to recognize companies that are working to earn public trust, while encouraging others to follow suit," said Fran Maier, president and executive director of TRUSTe. "The variety of respected brands making up the Most Trusted Companies demonstrates that, while companies face different challenges, the proper focus on policy, training, implementation, and awareness can pay off by earning the trust and loyalty of consumers."

The 2007 Most Trusted Companies for Privacy Study is a web-based study that gathers information from survey participants. A statistical analysis of useable responses gathered over a six-week period, which ended in February 2007, is then conducted. Responses related to more than 200 companies were analyzed and ranked. A complete description of the study's methodology is included with the report.

"The Most Trusted Companies for Privacy study is one of the most interesting and important studies of the year as it gives us a picture of how the public's perceptions change from year-to-year and how different companies respond to evolving privacy challenges," said Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder, Ponemon Institute. "While we read the bad news in the headlines, it is clear that there are many companies that have put on the mantle of privacy leadership, and that are setting a stellar example for others to follow with their superlative privacy and data security programs."

About the Ponemon Institute

The Ponemon Institute© is dedicated to advancing responsible information and privacy management practices in business and government. To achieve this objective, the Institute conducts independent research, educates leaders from the private and public sectors and verifies the privacy and data protection practices of organizations in a variety of industries.

About TRUSTe

TRUSTe helps consumers and businesses identify trustworthy online organizations through its Web Privacy Seal, Email Privacy Seal and Trusted Download Programs. An independent, nonprofit organization celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2007, TRUSTe certifies more than 2,000 Web sites, including the major internet portals and leading brands such as Microsoft, IBM, Oracle, Nestle, Intuit and eBay. TRUSTe resolves thousands of individual privacy disputes every year. To learn more about internet privacy visit

Media Contacts:

Mike Spinney

Ponemon Institute


Carolyn Hodge


(415) 520-3415


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