Cybersecurity breaches are making the headlines nearly every day. But what if the next time it was your business? What could the costs of a security breach be to you? According to a 2015 Kaspersky Lab study that evaluated over 5500 companies in 26 countries worldwide, the average direct costs of a security breach for a small business is a whopping $38,000. The study also cited that this number increases to $551,000 for large business enterprises to recover from an attack. These costs include lost business opportunities, downtime and the professional service fees associated with mitigating the breach. Of course, every breach is unique, and costs and damages will vary. To wrap your head around the basics and what you can expect, take a look at the numbers below:

Getting Back on Track – Once attacked, it’s very unlikely that you’ll have the means to get your business back in working order using just your staff and available technology tools alone. You’ll need to find outside organizations and experts to help lessen the blow from your recent attack. This may include IT Security Consultants, Risk Management Consultants, Accountants, Auditors, Legal Professionals and even Public Relations Specialists to soften the damage to your business’ reputation. The price tag for all this? On average, a small business is looking at around $10,000 in professional service costs with this number increasing exponentially for larger businesses.

Clearing Your Name – As for your reputation? Research shows that the estimate of reputational damage for a small business is nearly $9,000, while enterprises are faced with a loss of nearly $205,000. The loss of trust and reliability in your organization is generally something no business (large or small) can afford.

What About Financial Theft? – Another daunting statistic, research from Ponemon Institute in a global study sample notes that if you’ve lost funds in a cyberattack, 68% of these stolen dollars are generally declared “unrecoverable.”

Kaspersky makes one firm conclusion: the cost of a security breach is always higher than the cost of protection. It is important that you take a proactive approach to protecting your business from a cyberattack. Being reactive is likely going to cost you in the end, both financially as well as by negatively impacting your company’s reputation. Learning about what resources are available to help protect your organization against what might occur is the better choice over shelling out when an attack occurs.

 

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