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Data Breaches Could Cost You!

Data Breaches Could Cost You!

June 05, 2015
Data breaches like the one recently disclosed by the IRS aren’t something any organizations wishes for, however these days the risks are higher than ever.

Looking at the 2015 Data Breaches to-date from the Identity Theft Resource Center, it shows that there is no single industry that’s unsusceptible to cyber-attacks. Even just one data breach can expose hundreds of thousands to millions of sensitive records.

Identity Theft Resource Center

2015 Data Breach Category Summary

Totals for Category:


# of Breaches:  30

% of Breaches:  9.1%

# of Records:  403,531

% of Records:  0.4%

Totals for Category:


# of Breaches:  128

% of Breaches:  38.9%

# of Records:  110,407

% of Records:  0.1%

Totals for Category:


# of Breaches:  27

% of Breaches:  8.2%

# of Records:  572,692

% of Records:  0.6%

Totals for Category:


# of Breaches:  23

% of Breaches:  7.0%

# of Records:  1,330,500

% of Records:  1.3%

Totals for Category:


# of Braches:  121

% of Breaches:  36.8

# of Records:  100,923,435

% of Records:  97.7%

Totals for All Categories


# of Breaches: 329

% of Breaches:  100%

# of Records:  103,340,565

% of Records:  100%


2015 Breaches Identified by the ITRC as of: 6/2/2015

The ITRC Breach database is updated on a daily basis, and published to our website on each Tuesday. Unless noted otherwise, each report includes breaches that occurred in the year of the report name (such as “2014 Breach List”, or became public in the report name year, but were not public in the previous year. Each item must be previously published by a credible source, such as Attorney General’s website, TV, radio, press, etc. The item will not be included at all if ITRC is not certain that the source is real and credible.We include in each item a link or source of the article, and the information presented by that article. Many times, we have attributions from a multitude of media sources and media outlets. ITRC sticks to the facts as reported, and does not add or subtract from the previously published information. When the number of exposed records is not reported, we note that fact. When records are encrypted, we state that we do not (at this time) consider that to be a data exposure. However, we do not consider password protection as adequate, and we do consider those events to be a data exposure.The ITRC Breach Report presents individual information about data exposure events and running totals for the year. The ITRC Breach Stats Report develops some statistics based upon the type of entity involved in the data exposure.

The average cost of a data breach has increased by 23% over the past two years to $3.79 million, according to a report from IBM and the Ponemon Institute. And the average cost for each lost or stolen record containing sensitive information increased 6 percent over just the past year, from $145 to $154. Ponemon surveyed 350 companies in 11 countries for the survey, which was sponsored by IBM. All the respondents had experienced a data breach at some point, involving anything from 2,200 to more than 100,000 compromised records.

According to the report, three main factors contributed to the increased cost of data breaches in recent years, including the increased incidence of cyber-attacks and the increase in the lost business that can result. The cost associated with that lost business increased from an average of $1.33 million last year to $1.57 million in 2015 included unusually high customer turnover, the need for increased customer-acquisition activities, reputation losses and diminished goodwill. A third factor in the increased costs is associated with data-breach detection and escalation, including forensic and investigative activities, assessment and audit services, crisis-team management and communications. On average, those costs increased from $0.76 million last year to $0.99 million in this year’s report.

The report identified two factors that can help mitigate the cost of data breaches: involvement of the company’s board of directors — which can reduce the cost by $5.5 per record, the report found — and the purchase of insurance protection, which can drop that cost by $4.4 per record, it said.

Causes Of Data Breaches

For all industries the report identified three root causes of data breaches with Malicious or Criminal Attacks being the most often cause. The other causes were System Glitches, and Human Error. The report also mentioned that organizations in certain countries are more likely to have a data breach. Brazil and France appear to have the highest estimated probability of occurrence while Germany and Canada have the lowest probability of data breach.

Furthermore the time to identify and contain data breaches impact costs and that the time to identify and contain malicious and criminal attack is the highest compared to system glitches and human error.


2015 Cost of Data Breach Study: Global Analysis

ITRC Breach Reports

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