A data breach is the unauthorized access and acquisition of an entity’s sensitive, confidential or protected information. Cybercriminals use specific hacking tools to steal data from web applications, desktops, and databases. The data includes names, addresses, medical records, social security numbers, and bank account details. Here are some of how a data breach can impact a business.
When a data breach occurs, a company’s systems will likely be inoperable as employees will not be able to log in to service, access email, or download applications. This could result in the loss of critical business processes while the organization attempts to repair its systems and assess its threat level. Companies with large data sets may need to dedicate substantial internal resources and investigative services to ensure that their systems are not compromised. When the IT systems are compromised, a company will have to shut down websites, email, mobile applications, and other critical services dependent on the compromised data. If a data breach is widespread enough, an organization may have to close its business entirely.
Compromised Customer Relationships
Customers expect their data to be confidential and secure. When a breach happens, the privacy and security of their data are put at risk. This can result in the loss of customer trust and economic loss from an inability to continue regular business practices. Organizations must educate customers about how their data is processed, shared, and secured to mitigate this issue. Brands that have suffered data breaches will likely find it challenging to regain customer trust and loyalty. Consumers will be less likely to share valuable information with a company that has been hacked, and they may also become more cautious in their purchases.
Theft of Intellectual Property and Trade Secrets
Data theft is the unauthorized use of sensitive or confidential information. It can result in a loss of hard work and investments made by a company. Industries such as pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, and banking have developed their intellectual property, trade secrets, and competitive intelligence. When these are compromised, they can result in considerable losses in terms of time, money, and resources invested by a company. Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) are an individual or company’s rights to inventions and creations based on imagination and innovation. They protect copyrights, trademarks, ideas, and other intellectual property from being stolen or used without permission.
Destruction and Corruption of Databases and Records
Data is stored in digital databases and records. When a data breach occurs, digital information may be corrupted or destroyed in the attack. In such cases, vital business processes can come to a standstill until the database corruption issues are resolved. Storage of an organization’s data in the cloud can make it vulnerable to data breaches. Cloud computing involves multiple third-party companies providing services such as software, data storage, e-commerce, and more. These third-party services will likely be secured by a perimeter security system and a crowd-sourced moderation system.
When a data breach occurs, an organization needs to immediately understand the nature of the breach and implement the necessary measures to reduce or eliminate any further damage to its systems or customer information. It should also evaluate its security controls and take corrective action if required. Companies must ensure that they provide their customers with adequate information about the incident and its resolution. Learn more here about the necessary steps you need to take to recover from data breaches.
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