FindLaw columnist Eric Sinrod writes regularly in this section on legal developments surrounding technology and the internet.
A recent study relating to data security breaches in the United States shows that total per-incident costs are substantial. The average total per-incident costs in 2009 were $6.75 million, comprised of an average cost of $204 per customer with a jeopardized record. Breaches included within the survey varied from 5,000 records to more than 101,000 records from 15 different industry sectors. The most expensive data breach within the ambit of the study cost almost a whopping $31 million dollars to resolve.
PGP Corporation, an enterprise data protection company, and the Poneman Institute, a privacy and information management research firm, as part of their fifth annual U.S. Cost of a Data Breach Study, tracked a wide array of cost elements. These elements included outlays for detection, escalation, notification, and response along with legal, investigative and administrative expenses, customer defections, opportunity loss, reputation management, and costs related to customer support like information hotlines and credit monitoring subscriptions. The study analyzed companies from 15 different industries. These industries included the financial, retail, healthcare, services, education, technology, manufacturing, transportation, consumer, hotels and leisure, entertainment, marketing, pharmaceutical, communications, research, energy and defense industries.