Failure to meet our customers' price expectations would adversely affect our business and results of operations.
Demand for our products and services is sensitive to price for almost all of our businesses, and changes in our pricing strategies, including shipping pricing, have had a significant impact on the numbers of customers and orders in some regions, which in turn affects our revenues, profitability, and results of operations. Many factors can significantly impact our pricing and marketing strategies, including the costs of running our business, our competitors' pricing and marketing strategies, and the effects of inflation. If we fail to meet our customers' price expectations, our business and results of operations may suffer.
Failure to protect our information systems and the confidential information of our customers, employees, and business partners against security breaches or thefts could damage our reputation and brands, subject us to litigation and enforcement actions, and substantially harm our business and results of operations.
Our business involves the receipt, storage, and transmission of customers' personal and payment card information, as well as confidential information about our business, employees, suppliers, and business partners, some of which is entrusted to third-party service providers, partners, and vendors. Our information systems and those of third parties with which we share information are vulnerable to an increasing threat of cyber security risks, including physical and electronic break-ins, computer viruses, and phishing and other social engineering scams, among other risks. As security threats evolve and become more sophisticated and more difficult to detect and defend against, a hacker or thief may defeat our security measures, or those of our third-party service provider, partner, or vendor, and obtain confidential or personal information, and we or the third party may not discover the security breach and theft of information for a significant period of time after the breach occurs. We may need to expend significant resources to protect against security breaches and thefts of data or to address problems caused by breaches or thefts, and we may not be able to anticipate cyber attacks or implement adequate preventative measures. Any compromise or breach of our information systems or the information systems of third parties with which we share information could, among other things:
damage our reputation and brands;
expose us to losses, litigation, enforcement actions, and possible liability;
result in a failure to comply with legal and industry privacy regulations and standards;
lead to the misuse of our and our customers' confidential or personal information; or
cause interruptions in our operations.
We are subject to the laws of many states, countries, and regions and industry guidelines and principles governing the collection, use, retention, disclosure, sharing, and security of data that we receive from and about our customers and employees. Any failure or perceived failure by us to comply with any of these laws, guidelines, or principles could result in actions against us by governmental entities or others, a loss of customer confidence, and damage to our brands, any of which could have an adverse effect on our business. In addition, the regulatory landscape is constantly changing, as various regulatory bodies throughout the world enact new laws concerning privacy, data retention, data transfer and data protection. For example, the recent General Data Protection Regulation in Europe includes operational and compliance requirements that are different than those currently in place and also includes significant penalties for non-compliance. Complying with these varying and changing requirements could cause us to incur substantial costs or require us to change our business practices in a manner adverse to our business and operating results.