Some of the most alarming statistics concerning data breaches relate to how frequently they occur, who is suffering them, and the cost such breaches impose on their victims.
According to a recent survey of 583 IT practitioners (more than half of whom were employed by organizations with more than 5,000 employees), 90% of organizations had suffered at least one data breach in the last year, 59% said they suffered two or more breaches in the last year. The cost can be staggering. According to a one study, the average organizational cost of a data breach in the United States was $7.2 million and cost companies an average of $214 per record compromised.
If nothing else, these statistics tell us why businesses of any size should care about this issue – data breaches are happening to almost everyone, they’re happening now, and they’re expensive. Technology is making the world increasingly “flat.” It is easier to disseminate large quantities of data in shorter periods of time over larger geographical areas. There is no sign that this trend will reverse itself.
So we should probably assume that as a result, more and more organizations will become susceptible to data breaches. In addition, as the security threats increase and become more complex, the costs associated with defending against such threats will also increase. Based on the above studies, it appears that larger organizations are no more immune to such attacks simply because of their size.
What steps are you taking to protect yourself? What policies and preventative measures are your company taking to minimize the risk of a data breach and, as a consequence, the exposure of its customers’ private information to the outside world?
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