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Firms lost $3.86 million per data breach on average in 2020, says IBM Security study

According to the study, top three root causes for cyber breaches were malicious attack, system glitch and 21% human error.

IBM data Breach report 2020 findings published
IBM data Breach report 2020 findings published (Pixabay)

IBM on Wednesday released a global study on the financial impact of data breaches. The study found that the security breaches cost companies $3.86 million per breach on an average. It also reports that compromised employee accounts were among the most expensive root causes.

The findings were reported in a ‘2020 Cost of a Data Breach Report’ which was conducted by the Ponemon Institute and sponsored by the IBM Security. It covers interviews with over 3,200 security professionals in organisations that faced data breach over the past year.

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According to the study, 80% of the 500 organisations that faced data breaches led to the exposure of customers’ personally identifiable information.

Key findings of the study are:

140 million was the average total cost of a data breach in the 2020 study, an increase of 9.4% from 2019.

5,522 was the cost per lost or stolen record in the 2020 study, an increase of 10% from 2019.

53% of data breaches were caused by malicious attacks.

The average time to identify a data breach increased from 221 to 230 days.

The average time to contain a data breach increased from 77 to 83 days

Top three root causes of a data breach are - 53% malicious attack, 26% system glitch and 21% human error.

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“When it comes to businesses’ ability to mitigate the impact of a data breach, we’re beginning to see a clear advantage held by companies that have invested in automated technologies,” said Wendi Whitmore, Vice President, IBM X-Force Threat Intelligence.

“At a time when businesses are expanding their digital footprint at an accelerated pace and security industry’s talent shortage persists, teams can be overwhelmed securing more devices, systems and data. Security automation can help resolve this burden, not only enabling a faster breach response but a significantly more cost-efficient one as well.”

You can check the full 2020 Cost of a Data Breach Report here.