Is your company ready for a big data breach?

Despite the majority of companies experiencing or anticipating significant cost and business disruption due to a material data breach, they still struggle to take the proper measures to mitigate damage in the wake of an incident, according to Experian and the Ponemon Institute.

“A majority of companies we surveyed indicate they have already or are very likely to lose customers and business partners, receive negative publicity and face serious financial consequences due to a data breach,” said Michael Bruemmer, VP at Experian Data Breach Resolution. “Yet, despite understanding the consequences, many companies struggle to take the right steps to mitigate the fallout following an incident, demonstrating a need for better awareness and investment in the tools that can alleviate negative customer perceptions.”

Companies that suffer data breaches experience significant costs and business disruption, including the loss of business and trust from customers, negative media attention and legal action.

  • Seventy-six percent of privacy professionals say their organization already had or expects to have a material data breach that results in the loss of customers and business partners.
  • Similarly, 75 percent say they have had or expect to have such an incident that results in negative public opinion and media coverage.
  • Sixty-six percent of companies have or believe they will suffer serious financial consequences as a result of an incident.

Companies struggle to properly handle potential damage due to a data breach and implement technologies to help prevent future incidents, even after suffering an incident.

  • Despite experiencing a breach, not all companies prepare for a future breach.
  • A majority of organizations surveyed don’t provide clear communication and notification to victims following an incident.
  • Organizations are missing security technology safeguards and tools to prevent or understand the extent of an incident.

“The study findings show that organizations need to prioritize preventing future breaches and better manage post-breach response,” said Dr. Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder of the Ponemon Institute. “In addition to improving technical safeguards, it’s clear that companies also should focus more attention on meeting the needs of affected consumers that suffer a data breach.”

The complete report is available here (registration required).

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