Quadruple down on data security

Short Takes...on Analytics

A blog by Prakash Santhana, director, Deloitte Transactions and Business Analytics LLP

You won’t be surprised by this sobering fact… As the sheer volume of business data continues to rise, so too have data security breaches.

According to the Identity Theft Resource Center1 (ITRC), a total of 696 data breaches involving more than 81 million records had been recorded in 2014 – through November 25. Surely, the numbers rose further during the hectic holiday shopping season.

And the hard dollar losses from data breaches are similarly painful. The Ponemon Institute’s 2014 Cost of Breach: Global Analysis study2 reveals that the average total cost of a single data breach is now $3.5 million globally, up 15 percent versus 2013.

Often forgotten in the sturm und drang surrounding massive, well-publicized data breaches are the intangible costs to a company’s reputation and competitive positioning. A recent survey3 conducted by Deloitte found that 59 percent of consumers surveyed are less likely to buy from a company once they have knowledge of a data breach.

It’s no wonder that data security was identified as a “supertrend” in Deloitte’s 2015 Analytics Trends report. Protecting against data breaches is not just a risk management issue, but is a potential source of competitive advantage (or disadvantage) that may be a central component of brand-building (or re-building) and corporate reputation.

Analytics is both the first and last line of defense for data security, and getting it right is no simple task. As fraudsters grow sophisticated, so too do security-focused data scientists – who are developing protective measures in such areas as intrusion detection, digital forensics, differential privacy, digital watermarking, malware countermeasures and more. The increased use of mobile devices, cloud services and real-time connectivity makes such security innovations even more critical.

If your company has invested heavily in analytics, but has not simultaneously “quadrupled down” on its data security infrastructure, consider making that a priority for 2015. One approach is an integrated effort across the enterprise, with analytics and IT playing a central role in ensuring your organization is as data-secure as possible.

1Identity Theft Resource Center, Data Breach Reports, Nov. 25, 2014.



Want to learn more about this and other analytics trends? Read Deloitte’s 2015 Analytics Trends report —available in interactive and PDF formats. Check it out and let us know what you think, and how we can help.

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