Materiality, Impact, and Risks
Customers trust us with their data for more than 67 million customer contracts. It goes without saying that this data must be protected, and its security ensured, if customers are to use our services. In line with this, guaranteeing strict security and systematically preventing unauthorized access to customer data are part of our DNA.
However, increasing digitalization brings more than risks that we have to protect customer data and our own data and information from: It also offers new opportunities (e.g., for product development) that we, as an internet and telecommunications company, aim to exploit.
We aim to enable society to participate in digitalization, and to ensure that this is done safely.
Digitalization is transforming both the economy and society. Currently countless initiatives, conferences, studies, and charters addressing the framework for digital transformation are being produced at the political, civil society, and business levels. Many different instances stress the need for everyone to be able to participate in digitalization. In addition, members of society need enhanced digital literacy skills if they are to engage with the new opportunities independently and responsibly. The internet and digitalization also play a key role in relation to respect for human rights. After all, topics such as freedom of opinion and information, privacy, and the right to participate in cultural life are now inextricably linked with the digital arena.
In the political sphere, digitalization is often discussed as a means of enabling sustainability and achieving climate goals – one that can play a decisive role in implementing climate protection measures. The infrastructure provided by the information and communications sector, and particularly data centers, is essential for this sustainability-oriented digitalization process.
For the United Internet Group as an internet and telecommunications company, the ability to leverage the opportunities offered by digitalization in the form of new products and processes for its own benefit and that of its customers is a critical success factor. This creates new challenges that the Company needs to address – especially with regard to data and information security. Our heavy focus on Corporate Digital Responsibility – the motivation for numerous measures that we take – aims to ensure we meet our responsibility to protect customer data and address the process of digital transformation with all its new opportunities and risks.
We aim to enable society to participate in the digitalization process, and to ensure that this is done safely. Data privacy and information security at our Group are aligned in all cases with the current requirements of, and strict standards applicable to, data privacy in Europe and Germany, which are fundamental to our business success. Closely related topics include data sovereignty and digital literacy for our customers, but naturally for our employees as well.
Due to the importance and multifaceted nature of this topic, responsibility for it has been assigned to a number of different Management Board members. Generally speaking, it is the preserve of the Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Chief Information Officer (CIO), or Chief Procurement Officer (CPO) of the segments, who report directly to the CEO of United Internet AG or the company concerned.
The numerous measures, systems, and goals in the Corporate Digital Responsibility area are described in more detail in the following sections.
A wide range of KPIs relevant to the specific areas concerned are used to monitor success. Further details can be found in the following sections.
Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.
Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation.
Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.