Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Threat Intelligence

8/18/2016
02:40 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Security Staff Shortages Incur Higher Breach Recovery Costs

New study measures the financial impact of a breach on a company short on IT security staff.

The shortage of skilled IT security professionals is not a new topic. Multiple reports have shed light on the talent shortage and the type of security risks associated with an IT department that is short on security skills. But a report released this week by Kaspersky Lab and partner B2B International shows the potential financial impact of being short-staffed in the security department. 

The study, which surveyed nearly 5,000 representatives from companies of different sizes and industries, compared the breach recovery costs for large companies that had enough IT security staff with large companies that were light on security support. The average cost of recovery for companies with inadequate security support was between $1.2 to $1.47 million, and from $100,000 to $500,000 for companies with a strong and sufficiently staffed IT security team.

When an organization has internal IT security staff on the payroll, they become more familiar with the cyclical process of a breach and recovery and are able to learn from each incident and apply that knowledge to the organization’s security posture, says Michael Canavan, vice president of North America for Kaspersky Lab.

“This is a large reason why you see the smaller dollar amount with those incidents [at organizations with in-house security staff],” he says. They’re less traumatic because more information is known, he adds.  

The survey also showed that additional staff wages make up a significant portion of the recovery costs -- $14K on average for SMBs and $126K for enterprises -- which was higher than the loss of business opportunities, credit rating, and compensation to clients and partners combined. 

Candace Worley, vice president and general manager for enterprise endpoint security at Intel, points out that while nearly $1.5 million for a breach is high, the average cost of a breach is now over $4 million dollars per incident, according to the Ponemon Group's Cost of Data Breach 2016 report.

“If a company was unfortunate enough to experience two breaches in a year," she says, then “investing in a security staff is the better way to go.”

She also notes that in addition to labor costs, organizations have to account for the brand impact and opportunity cost of a breach in addition to the hard costs. “There’s the domino or cascade of costs,” Worley says. 

Tejas Vashi, senior director of Cisco Services, says that while the industry acknowledges that many organizations need more security staff, it takes a long time to bring them on.

“Enterprises need to be proactively seeking out the talent and continuously reskilling their existing workforce,” says Vashi, adding that a proactive mindset is very important in the security space right now, for both hiring and threat mitigation. He likens the IT security landscape to a quote from Henry Ford: "The only thing worse than training your employees and having them leave is not training them and having them stay." 

Find the full report here.

Emily Johnson is the digital content editor for InformationWeek. Prior to this role, Emily worked within UBM America's technology group as an associate editor on their content marketing team. Emily started her career at UBM in 2011 and spent four and a half years in content ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
InReality01
100%
0%
InReality01,
User Rank: Strategist
8/19/2016 | 1:37:31 PM
Confusing Article
So, what is the cost of a breach?  The article talks about $1.2 - $1.47 million with good tech staff, only $100-$500K without but then goes on later to say $1.5 million is high but a breach is now actually around $4 million.  It's not clear. 
97% of Americans Can't Ace a Basic Security Test
Steve Zurier, Contributing Writer,  5/20/2019
TeamViewer Admits Breach from 2016
Dark Reading Staff 5/20/2019
How a Manufacturing Firm Recovered from a Devastating Ransomware Attack
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  5/20/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
Building and Managing an IT Security Operations Program
As cyber threats grow, many organizations are building security operations centers (SOCs) to improve their defenses. In this Tech Digest you will learn tips on how to get the most out of a SOC in your organization - and what to do if you can't afford to build one.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-11873
PUBLISHED: 2019-05-23
wolfSSL 4.0.0 has a Buffer Overflow in DoPreSharedKeys in tls13.c when a current identity size is greater than a client identity size. An attacker sends a crafted hello client packet over the network to a TLSv1.3 wolfSSL server. The length fields of the packet: record length, client hello length, to...
CVE-2019-12295
PUBLISHED: 2019-05-23
In Wireshark 3.0.0 to 3.0.1, 2.6.0 to 2.6.8, and 2.4.0 to 2.4.14, the dissection engine could crash. This was addressed in epan/packet.c by restricting the number of layers and consequently limiting recursion.
CVE-2019-12293
PUBLISHED: 2019-05-23
In Poppler through 0.76.1, there is a heap-based buffer over-read in JPXStream::init in JPEG2000Stream.cc via data with inconsistent heights or widths.
CVE-2018-7201
PUBLISHED: 2019-05-22
CSV Injection was discovered in ProjectSend before r1053, affecting victims who import the data into Microsoft Excel.
CVE-2018-7803
PUBLISHED: 2019-05-22
A CWE-754 Improper Check for Unusual or Exceptional Conditions vulnerability exists in Triconex TriStation Emulator V1.2.0, which could cause the emulator to crash when sending a specially crafted packet. The emulator is used infrequently for application logic testing. It is susceptible to an attack...