LRQA Nettitude Blog

Latest Security Breaches Spark Wake-Up Call For ‘The Board’

Posted by Rowland Johnson on Feb 12, 2014 1:58:01 PM

It would seem that there is no data and no organisation that is safe from a security breach in 2014.

Well that's what the credit card hackers of iconic American company Neiman Marcus would like you to think... Or even the data thieves of 110 million customers of retail giant target. And the list of world-wide cybercrime victims goes on….

With the size and scale of high profile heists growing by the day across the world, 2014 is set to become the year of the ‘big breach’. Upping the ante of 2013 and making it a memorial year for all the wrong 'security' reasons.

So, how can you help your firm avoid being tomorrow's headlines?

It is simple - place information security at the top of your agenda. Not just the CIO's agenda. Not just the FD's agenda. You need your CEO and the entire Board to understand the importance of what's at stake.

Here are the top 5 reasons why:

1. Reputation damage
2. Impact on Share Price & Profits
3. Legal fines
4. Loss of critical information or customer data
5. Misuse or unauthorized disclosure of data

And it could even be the end of trading for many smaller businesses.

With such devastating consequences, the board needs to pay attention. Most organisations have what appears to be a solid security program in place, this knowledge is enough for the busy CEO to have a false sense of comfort that things “are being handled”, but is that always the case?

Often the answer is NO. The proper security approach should be a lack of complacency.

Information security governance should be revisited often enough, and assured to be applied proactively to all of the organisation’s IT assets, and the entire company should be fully trained to be ‘security conscious’ with all that they do, as they can often be the weakest link for a hacker to expose.

The security budget must be given the same or higher priority and attention as the one for marketing or advertising. The old concept of - there is no such thing as bad publicity is a very costly one with regards to security breaches. For the likes of Neman Marcus and target there will be forgiveness, but smaller firms might never recover.

So the message is clear – Management, CIOs, FDs, CEOs, The Board - pay attention to information security NOW and forever.

To contact Nettitude's editor, please contact

Topics: 2014 Security Breaches, Neiman Marcus breach, Security Blog, Target security breach, Uncategorized

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