Overcoming Statistical Overload: Establishing the First Steps of a Cybersecurity Program

August 16, 2016Article

In the cybersecurity realm, businesses are frequently confronted with a confusing array of seemingly solid (and sometimes contradictory) statistics. For example, the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) Data Breach report states that there were 780 publicized data breaches in 2015. On the other hand, the 2016 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report considers a worldwide 2015 data set of 100,000 data “incidents,” of which 3,141 were “confirmed data breaches” with the majority of the breaches occurring in the U.S.

 An IBM/Ponemon Institute report (based on 383 companies in 12 countries) states  that the average global cost of each lost or stolen record was $158 and that data breaches cost the most in the U.S. ($221). Various reports and surveys also state that 71 percent of respondents’ networks were breached in 2014; 52 percent of respondents believed a “successful attack” was likely in 2015; that 74 percent of Chief Information Security Officers are concerned about employees stealing sensitive company information; and that only 38 percent of global organizations claim they are prepared to handle a sophisticated cyberattack.

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