The media loves a good bloodbath! Never before has customer data been collected in such large quantities, and never before has data remained so vulnerable to exposure via human error and malicious intent. Companies should consider why data breaches make front-page news and have a plan in place to keep customer information secure.
Big data means big money for thieves
Simply put, stealing company data can be extremely profitable. Company records are sold on global black markets in bulk, highlighting the need for internal and external controls to manage sensitive information. Like a vault, companies should consider not only what valuables are stored inside, but also who has access, when, and whether they can grant others passage into secure areas of the company. Big money also means big news stories, and headlines with huge sums are sure to get more press.
When the opportunity is too easy to pass up
There are a few common threads running through recent stories of large company data breaches in the news. The first important thing the unfortunate corporations share is their speed to respond. Talking points are released without a good understanding of how the data breach happened or what was taken, leading to skyrocketing numbers providing the media with continuous front-page fodder.
The second shared characteristic is a fundamental lack of proactive behavior on the part of many companies that fall victim to data breaches. Whether breaches are due to human error or malicious intent, implementing affordable file collaboration and storage solutions that keep security in focus will dramatically reduce the risk of a breach. When the media can report that companies didn’t do enough to protect consumers, the story is that much juicier.
Customers are more fearful than ever before
While it can be argued that the media is driving fear of data theft, it’s an indisputable fact that more people than ever are actively seeking information on the issue.
A chart from Google Trends shows interest over time in data breaches:
Companies should take note: Customers care about data security. Security-conscious customers at every level are now actively seeking knowledge on data breaches and, likely, how to prevent their information from being compromised. Companies that take a proactive stance on safeguarding customer information by demonstrating internal and external controls could get ahead of the customer preference curve.