CEOs Paying Attention To Security, Study SaysCEOs Paying Attention To Security, Study Says
CIO is the person most frequently held responsible for data protection, Ponemon survey says
March 25, 2010
Top-level executives are beginning to grasp the importance of security, according to a study published today.
Eighty-one percent of C-level executives think that investing in a security strategy can greatly reduce or mitigate the risk of data loss or theft, according to the survey of 115 C-level executives in the U.K. conducted by Ponemon Institute and sponsored by IBM.
"In the face of growing security threats, business leaders are finally recognizing that a strong data protection strategy plays a critical role to their bottom line," says Dr. Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder of Ponemon Institute. "Today, C-level executives believe the cost savings from investing in a data protection program is substantially higher than the estimated value of recovering from a breach."
Seventy-seven percent of C-level executives reported that their organizations have experienced a data breach at some point, while all respondents disclosed that they have had their data attacked in the past 12 months. Seventy-six percent think that reducing potential security flaws within business-critical applications is the most important aspect of their data protection programs.
C-level executives believe good data protection practices can support important organizational goals, such as compliance, reputation management, and customer trust. Only a small percentage of the CEOs surveyed, just 18 percent, are very confident that their organizations will not suffer a data breach within the next year.
Executives in the study estimated the average data breach cost per compromised record at about $250. CEOs estimated that cost to be closer to $300 per compromised record.
Three-quarters of respondents reported that one person is considered to be in charge of data protection for their organizations. That person is considered by most to be the CIO -- especially by the CEO.
More than half (51 percent) of C-level executives believe the purpose of data protection programs is to increase brand or marketplace image.
"We are witnessing C-level executives implement security strategies at a much higher rate than ever before," said Daniel Sabbah, general manager of IBM Rational.
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