Feeds

System failure blamed for increasing data breach costs

Negligence drops to number 2...

Seven Steps to Software Security

System failure has replaced negligence as the single biggest source of data breaches involving UK firms, the cost of which rose for the third successive year.

The average data breach cost UK organisations £1.9 million or £71 per record, an increase of 13 per cent from the year before, according to a Symantec-sponsored survey. Cost of breaches ranged from £36,000 to £6.2 million.

The 2010 edition of the survey blamed "malicious or criminal attacks" for 29 per cent of all data breaches, up from 22 per cent during 2009. The costs arising from data breaches include cleanup costs as well as increased customer churn due to diminished trust.

More than a third (37 per cent) of the cases scrutinised during the study involved system failure, up 7 percentage points on 2009. Negligence, by contrast, dropped 11 points to reach a 34 per cent blame for data breach rating last year. Lost or stolen devices and third-party mistakes each fell slightly, while malicious or criminal attacks rose five points to become the principle reason given for 29 per cent of data breach incidents.

The survey, published today, and carried out by the Ponemon Institute under the sponsorship of Symantec, was based on an analysis of actual data breach experiences of 38 UK companies from 13 different industry sectors, including banks and telecoms.

Seven in 10 firms hit by data breach problems applied encryption technologies as a post-breach remedy, while moves to strengthen perimeter controls were applied by a similar number (69 per cent) of victims.

Last year the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) received new enforcement powers, including the ability to levy heavy fines on organisations that experience data breaches as a result of negligence, providing even more reason to prevent breaches in the first place.

"Regulators are cracking down to ensure organisations implement required data security controls or face harsher penalties," said Dr Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder of the Ponemon Institute. "Confronted with both malicious and non-malicious threats from inside and outside the organisation, companies must proactively implement policies and technologies to mitigate the risk of costly breaches." ®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
NEW, SINISTER web tracking tech fingerprints your computer by making it draw
Have you been on YouPorn lately, perhaps? White House website?
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Black Hat anti-Tor talk smashed by lawyers' wrecking ball
Unmasking hidden users is too hot for Carnegie-Mellon
Attackers raid SWISS BANKS with DNS and malware bombs
'Retefe' trojan uses clever spin on old attacks to grant total control of bank accounts
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.