High profile companies have been experiencing data breaches of record-breaking proportions. Emphasis on the news is on 1) how did this happen? 2) how to stop it from happening again, 3) protecting yourself as a consumer from this type of threat and 4) how a company (issuer) can protect itself from cyber threats.
Why Issuers Should Care
- The use of sensitive, personal information for any purpose (such as looking up an account) has to be safe guarded.
- Vendors, including third party vendors – develop special indemnity language in contracts to cover damages to your reputation, brand and shareholders.
- Know how many shareholders subscribe to online account access.
- Target these shareholders to educate them on password format and the downfall of phishing.
- Cost – pay for a year of credit monitoring for those impacted. Cost of losing credibility on a brand level. Trust issues. Public relations nightmare. Impact to stock price.
- Keep the company name out of the news relating to this negative issue.
- E-mail – never a secure method of communicating sensitive information such as account numbers and social security numbers.