How Much Could a Data Breach Cost Your Business?

11 Jul 2013
HomeSecurityHow Much Could a Data Breach Cost Your Business?

Many businesses live in fear of suffering from a serious data breach, knowing that the damage caused could be very disruptive. Companies worry about their sensitive data getting into the wrong hands for all kinds of reasons, including competitors getting access to their new product information and the problems that can be caused by the loss of personal data on their systems.

However, one of the most serious problems suffered by businesses who suffer a data breach is the financial cost, and this is certainly one of the main concerns.

But how much would it cost your business to suffer from a sensitive data breach?

Average Cost of Data Breach is £2 Million

It may surprise you to learn that the average cost to UK organisations suffering from a data breach is a staggering £2 million. This is the figure revealed by the 2013 Cost of Data Breach Study, which is an annual study realised by Symantec and the Ponemon Institute.

The figure is a significant rise since last year, where the average cost stood at £1.75 million. It also means that the cost of a data breach to organisations has continued to rise for the past six years in a row.

Could You Deal with the Expense?

The massive financial losses suffered by firms that suffer from the loss of sensitive data are a clear warning to other organisations to take precautions early on. Data protection and secure data destruction may involve some investment, but this is not going to be anything like the costs involved if you suffer from a data breach. So if ever you needed a reason to take your data security seriously, this is it.

How to Prevent Problems

There are many ways to help reduce the likelihood that you will suffer from a serious data breach. Symantec states that employee training is key because a third of cases resulted from human error, with employees and contractors being to blame. Employees therefore need to be trained to know the risks of handling secure data so that they take more care over devices that contain the data.

The most costly cases of data breaches involved attacks by criminals for malicious purposes, which was the reason behind just over a third of incidents. It is therefore a good idea to invest in data protection for data stored online or in your computer system as well as start carrying out regular secure destruction of your data to ensure that no one gets access to it after it has been destroyed.

Stay Safe & Save Money 

Another problem highlighted by the study was that when a business suffers a serious data breach, it may find that its customers begin to trust it less and start turning to competitors instead. This can also represent a serious loss to your organisation, and the damage to your image may be irreparable.

But there is no reason why you should suffer financially or otherwise. Take precautions now, train your employees and secure and destroy your data properly, and you can significantly reduce the chances of it happening to your organisation.


Image courtesy of scottchan /