Attacks/Breaches
3/7/2011
06:09 PM
Connect Directly
Google+
LinkedIn
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Data Breach Costs Continue Climbing

Some of that cost may be unnecessary, a study has found.

The average cost of a data breach for a U.S. company continues to rise, having reached $7.2 million in 2010.

This represents an increase of 7% from 2009, when the average cost was found to be $6.8 million, according to Symantec which published "2010 Annual Study: U.S. Cost of a Data Breach," and the Ponemon Institute, which conducted the research.

The cost of losing data has grown for U.S. companies every year since 2006.

Larry Ponemon, founder of the Ponemon Institute, says that there was one unusual finding: A rapid response to a breach, which generally involves notifying everyone potentially affected, turns out to be more costly than a slow response.

Increasingly sophisticated data security threats and compliance pressures are pushing organizations to respond as rapidly as possible to data breaches. This is reflected in the finding that malicious attacks have become the most costly cause of breaches. But responding quickly to a breach may not be called for in every instance.

This isn't to say a slow response is always good; rather, it reflects the survey's finding that rapid notification can be a waste of money if subsequent investigation indicates some of those notified were not affected after all.

"In the world of data breaches, telling people your data is lost or stolen and then having to change that doesn't help anyone," said Ponemon in a phone interview.

Quick responders paid $268 per record, an increase of 22% from 2009, while organizations that took more time paid $174 per record, a decrease of 11% from 2009.

Symantec has created an online data breach calculator to help companies assess the potential cost and likelihood of a data breach. Not coincidentally, Symantec sells security solutions, particularly those focused on encryption.

Encryption has become more popular lately because data breach regulations often exempt companies from notification requirements if the lost data was encrypted.

This trend is partially reflected in the survey, which found: an increase in the number of organizations with an "above average IT security posture"; a decrease in breaches due to system failure, lost or stolen devices, and third-party mistakes; and more companies responding faster and putting CISOs in charge of response management.

Negligence remains the most common cause of breach incidents (41%), followed by lost or stolen portable or mobile devices (35%), malicious attacks (31%), and system failure (27%).

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Oldest First  |  Newest First  |  Threaded View
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
Security Operations and IT Operations: Finding the Path to Collaboration
A wide gulf has emerged between SOC and NOC teams that's keeping both of them from assuring the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of IT systems. Here's how experts think it should be bridged.
Flash Poll
New Best Practices for Secure App Development
New Best Practices for Secure App Development
The transition from DevOps to SecDevOps is combining with the move toward cloud computing to create new challenges - and new opportunities - for the information security team. Download this report, to learn about the new best practices for secure application development.
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2017-0290
Published: 2017-05-09
NScript in mpengine in Microsoft Malware Protection Engine with Engine Version before 1.1.13704.0, as used in Windows Defender and other products, allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code or cause a denial of service (type confusion and application crash) via crafted JavaScript code within ...

CVE-2016-10369
Published: 2017-05-08
unixsocket.c in lxterminal through 0.3.0 insecurely uses /tmp for a socket file, allowing a local user to cause a denial of service (preventing terminal launch), or possibly have other impact (bypassing terminal access control).

CVE-2016-8202
Published: 2017-05-08
A privilege escalation vulnerability in Brocade Fibre Channel SAN products running Brocade Fabric OS (FOS) releases earlier than v7.4.1d and v8.0.1b could allow an authenticated attacker to elevate the privileges of user accounts accessing the system via command line interface. With affected version...

CVE-2016-8209
Published: 2017-05-08
Improper checks for unusual or exceptional conditions in Brocade NetIron 05.8.00 and later releases up to and including 06.1.00, when the Management Module is continuously scanned on port 22, may allow attackers to cause a denial of service (crash and reload) of the management module.

CVE-2017-0890
Published: 2017-05-08
Nextcloud Server before 11.0.3 is vulnerable to an inadequate escaping leading to a XSS vulnerability in the search module. To be exploitable a user has to write or paste malicious content into the search dialogue.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
In past years, security researchers have discovered ways to hack cars, medical devices, automated teller machines, and many other targets. Dark Reading Executive Editor Kelly Jackson Higgins hosts researcher Samy Kamkar and Levi Gundert, vice president of threat intelligence at Recorded Future, to discuss some of 2016's most unusual and creative hacks by white hats, and what these new vulnerabilities might mean for the coming year.