My phone’s been ringing this morning from people wanting to talk about the massive Marriott breach — the revelation that private data associated with up to 500 million people may have been compromised. I’m sure there’s a lot more to learn from the details, but in the meantime, I’ll take a quick minute to jot down some initial thoughts:
Moody's Cyber Risk Group: “Cyber becomes more and more important.”
On November 12, Moody’s announced its intent to start incorporating in its credit rating method the degree to which an organization faces risk of major impact from a cyberattack. This follows the news, back in February 2018, that the Securities and Exchange Commission issued additional guidance on its requirement that public companies must “inform investors about material cybersecurity risks and incidents,” even if they have not yet been the target of a cyberattack.
More than $2.5 trillion in mergers were announced in the first half of 2018—a new record. Ranked by value of the deal, energy and power deals led, followed by media and entertainment, with healthcare and industrials close behind. Industries are converging and organizations are using acquisitions, divestitures, and other forms of asset remix to reposition their businesses. For example, there are numerous mergers among pharmaceutical, life sciences, and biotech companies as they seek to gain traction in a highly fragmented market. EY predicts that the total value of life sciences M&A will surpass $200 billion in 2018. According to Deloitte, technology acquisition is the primary driver of M&A pursuits, ahead of expanding customer bases in existing markets, and adding products or services.
By annually tracking the cost of data breaches, Ponemon Institute has helped instill broad awareness that these costs continue to increase. As noted in our report earlier this year, Ponemon also offers some insight on steps companies can take to minimize these costs, citing the positive impact of investment in pre-established incident response teams, employee training, and enhanced encryption.
For 9 straight years now, Verizon has released the Data Breach Investigations Report to give cybersecurity professionals a detailed look into the threat landscape. The report is meant to help security teams keep up with increasingly sophisticated attackers.
Cyber attackers only need one small crack in a security plan to invade and jeopardize an entire organization. As IBM and Ponemon Institute reported in their 2015 Cost of Data Breach Study: Global Analysis, this is becoming a costly problem for today’s businesses.