Data Breach Costs are Up (Again), But Some Companies Know Just What to Do…

The Ponemon Institute, in collaboration with IBM, has released its annual study on the costs of data breaches globally and here in the United States. The “2016 Cost of Data Breach Study:
Global Analysis,” was published last week, and it contains some important findings to take note of, most of which reveal the rising costs associated with a data breach.

rising costs IBM release
“Slow Response and Lack of Planning Cost Companies Millions”

Among the study’s findings:

Although these statistics are sure to garner headlines, perhaps the most valuable findings from the report concern factors that can actually decrease the costs of a data breach. According to the study (page 14 of the Report), there are ten (10) actions that, when taken, are associated with lower data breach costs. They include:

  • Maintaining an incident response team ($16 per capita)
  • Extensive use of encryption ($13)
  • Training employees ($9)
  • Participating in sharing of threat information ($9)
  • Having a company’s board involved ($6)
Data breach costs saving efforts
“…an incident response team, extensive use of encryption, employee training, participation in threat sharing or business continuity management decreased the per capita cost of data breach.”

This latest Ponemon study confirms the continuing trend of rising costs associated with data breaches, both globally and in the United States. It offers some hope, however, as well. It is now increasingly clear that while data security incidents might well be an inevitable part of doing business, there are concrete actions that smart organizations can take  – and some that they can avoid taking – which can lower risks and resulting costs associated with those incidents. Cyber-savvy organizations will train their employees, maintain an IR team and involve their boards as they consider, plan and prepare for cybersecurity incidents. These actions and others will propel these organizations forward and add to their competitive edge in the marketplace.

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