Why you need to address your legacy data management problem in 2024

Humans naturally shy away from problems. Our instinct is to avoid tasks that seem overwhelming. We put-off, procrastinate, and avoid the inconvenient.

The word “procrastination” is derived from the Latin verb “procrastinare” which literally means ‘to put off until tomorrow’. This is exactly what many businesspeople do with jobs or projects that they know are complex and time-consuming. It’s natural – so there’s nothing irrational about doing that. However, some tasks don’t just sit stagnant until they are addressed and completed. Some tasks and projects become exponentially worse, more complex, or to the point of no return. Legacy data management is one of these tasks.

Why do I need to manage my legacy data?

Across your organisation you are likely to have multiple repositories where customer interactions are being retained either as part of regulatory requirements or your own best practice. These legacy repositories likely contain call recordings, copies of text-based interactions such as SMS, chat, email and even potentially videos and screen recordings.

There are the obvious reasons as to why this customer data cannot just be kept here collecting dust, but there is a host of other reasons why it shouldn’t be left here too. If a Freedom of Information or regulatory request comes in, it needs to be actioned quickly to minimise penalties. If a historic customer returns or a retained account has a problem, it’s good to have the option of retrieving this historic context. Additionally, much legacy data could pre-date GDPR and PCI DSS regulations resulting in toxic data.

Beyond all of this, businesses that store legacy data will presumably be paying for ongoing maintenance and hosting simply to store the unused data. A rich bank of insight sitting there collecting dust… that seems crazy to us!

Is it illegal to store legacy customer data in 2023?

There are many laws and regulations that dictate how and when you can store customer data, especially historic customer data and that of the sensitive kind. Our full blog on which data privacy laws you need to address in 2023, can be read here.

For GDPR in the EU, and the UK Data Protection Act, there is no time scale specified for storing customer data – but both regulations explicitly state that customer data should not be held for any longer than is necessary. There are also additional regulations and measures for sensitive data.

PCI DSS also doesn’t define a timeframe for which cardholder data may be stored. There is however a PCI DSS requirement [3.1] specifying that a data retention and disposal policy must be implemented to limit data storage to that which is necessary for legal, regulatory, and/or business purposes. Businesses in certain sectors, like finance and government, may need to store payment details for seven years or more, but other sectors that don’t have this same requirement could potentially be in breach of GDPR or PCI DSS.

Is it cost-effective to address this issue?

It’s difficult to put an exact ROI on the resolution of legacy data problems because it varies business to business.

But clearly addressing the unused uncompliant legacy data problem, by redacting sensitive and personal information, removing toxic data, encrypting all the recordings, and housing them on a single highly resilient platform in the cloud or on-premises, is a huge improvement to paying a hefty monthly for the storage of legacy data that you don’t use.

Furthermore, you then unlock the opportunity to leverage this data for agent empowerment. Quicker and more secure access to legacy data can give agents additional context and support when solving customer requests and queries. The business intelligence capabilities are huge. You effectively unlock a vast dataset that is secure, compliant, and rich in quality.

Benefits of properly managing legacy customer data

With the Liquid Voice legacy recording management solution, we store organisation’s legacy call recordings on a highly resilient on-premise platform or in the cloud, alleviating the ongoing maintenance costs that come with storing legacy recordings across multiple historic platforms.

This reduces energy consumption as well, lowering CO2 emissions and making the organisation greener.

In addition, Liquid Voice analyses all the legacy recordings to ensure compliance, by redacting sensitive personal information and removing toxic data.

Additionally, by storing all the clean legacy recordings in one place, responses to regulatory requests can be sped up and subsequently, penalties can be minimised. Financial organisations must hold legacy recordings for 7 years+ in some cases, and for building societies this figure can be more than 50 years (a mortgage term plus twelve years), so it’s vital that this dataset is not just sitting stagnant burning a hole in your pocket by racking up unnecessary support costs.

Using the latest compression technology we can reduce overall storage and consolidate the full bank of rich data, meaning staff can quickly and easily access and replay historic recordings through the LiquidVoice Single Pane of Glass dashboard. This improves business efficiency across the board as staff can quickly find interactions related to an account or individual, all the context within them, and leverage this data during their current and future customer interactions. Generally, better visibility over data means an empowered workforce of agents, armed with the knowledge and answers they need to provide a top-tier customer service.

So, the essential point here is, do not procrastinate over your scary legacy data. We can help! It might seem daunting, but addressing this problem is vital from a business efficiency angle, a financial angle, and most importantly a compliance and legal angle – the three prongs of business success if you will.

If you would like to find out about how Liquid Voice can support you in cleaning and consolidating your data, whether it be sensitive or otherwise, watch this short video here:

Read more about our legacy recording management solutions here: https://www.liquidvoice.com/legacy-recording-management/