As connected devices and digital experiences grow more intertwined with users’ everyday lives through social networks and the Internet of Things, consumers are demanding increasingly personalized interactions. So much so that the teams who fail to deliver on these demands are suffering the consequences.

Despite these demands for personalization, more than 90% of consumers say they are concerned about data privacy and how companies are using their information, prohibiting marketers and digital experience teams from accessing the data they need to enable relevant experiences. This requires a shift in mindset for IT leaders who are accustomed to managing their company’s internal user data, a scenario in which employee trust is assumed, all data is considered company property and privacy takes a backseat to security.

When it comes to customer identities and data, IT faces the challenge of adhering to various privacy regulations put into place by third-party social networks, identity providers and lawmakers that require businesses to put control in the hands of users. As Forrester puts it, “In the consumer world, consumers expect websites to provide granular user-centric preferences so they can decide how the firm uses their data” (Forrester Research, Inc., Market Overview: Customer Identity and Access Management (CIAM) Solutions. Merritt Maxim and Andras Cser. August 4, 2015).

Rather than spending months on development and maintenance to keep up with the evolution of third-party privacy policies, IT leaders can rely on an identity solution to automatically manage data and regional privacy compliance in the cloud. Best-of-breed solutions also make it easy for consumers to manage and update their privacy settings in real-time, facilitating a “digital handshake” that enables organizations to provide users with the right level of personalization based on their personal privacy settings.