Cyberattacks are a rising crime not only in the U.S. but all over the world. Cybercrimes have become the most significant and expensive threat to companies of all sizes as they become progressively more sophisticated and organized. Recent high-profile attacks include data breach at Marriott in 2018, the Equifax breach in 2017 and the Yahoo hack in 2014, all of which have done unprecedented damages and contributed substantially to the rising cost of cybercrimes.

Following are some statistics proving the rise in number and cost of cybercrime.  

Average number of security breaches in 2017 = 130 

Average number of security breaches in 2018 = 145 

Increase in the average number of security breaches = +11% 

Average cost of cybercrime in 2017 = $11.7m 

Average cost of cybercrime in 2018 = $13.0m 

Increase in the annual cost of cybercrime = +12% increase 

These numbers are from the Ninth Annual Cost of Cybercrime Study, a study conducted by Accenture and Ponemon Institute. Costs included detection and recovering, investigation and after-the-fact activity cost to reduce business disruption and loss of customers due to the attack. Broadly speaking, costs included direct, indirect and opportunity costs that contributed to the rising cost of cybercrimes. 

Cost by countries

Among countries that were included in the study, the U.S. incurred the highest cost of cybercrimes at $27.37 million in 2018, followed by Japan at $13.57 million and Germany a close third with a cost of $13.12 million. The United Kingdom and France rounded up the top five with $11.46 million and $9.72 million respectively. Other countries ranked in the top eleven were Singapore, Canada, Spain, Italy, Brazil and Australia as sixth to 11th in that order.

Cost of cybercrimes by country
Figure 1: The average annual cybercrime cost increase from 2017 to 2018 for the top five countries 

Cost by industries

The Banking industry incurred the highest cost in 2018 followed by Utilities, Software, Automotive and Insurance industry rounding up the top 5. Other industries included High tech, Capital markets, Energy, US Federal, consumer goods, health, retail, life sciences, communications and media, travel and the public sector. The numbers indicate that costs for all industries went up from 2017 to 2018. The Health industry was the only exception with a slight decline in costs from $12.86 million in 2017 to $11.82 million in 2018. 

Cost of cybercrimes by industries
Figure 2: The 2018 average annual cybercrime cost by industries 

Cost by type of attacks

Malware and web-based attacks continue to be the most expensive with malware attacks having increased by 11% from 2017 to 2018 and costing organizations an average of US$2.6 million annually. Adding all types of cyberattacks, concluded that the total cost of cybercrime to an organization in 2018 was a whopping US$13 million. 

Cost of cybercrimes by type of attack
Figure 3: The 2018 average annual cybercrime cost by type of attack 

What is at Stake?

According to the University of Maryland, hackers are now attacking networks and computers at a rate of one attack every 39 seconds. The school also found that 1 in every 3 American has already been hacked. So just what are hackers targeting?  

Most of us think that customer information and financial information are the most valuable pieces of information hackers are after. Although they are on top of the list, there are several other pieces of information that organizations don’t realize could be vital to hackers. Strategic plans were tied with Financial information followed by Board member information, customer passwords, R&D M&A, intellectual property and non-patented IP.  

Most valuable information to cyber criminals
Source: EY – Global Information Security Survey 2018-2019 

Bottom line…

Cyberattacks can disrupt normal operations of a business causing loss in revenue, destroy sensitive data, steal intellectual property, confiscate personal and financial data, embezzle money and cause serious reputational damage. It’s no surprise that many organizations, big and small, are proactively investing heavily in cybersecurity these days. However, several organizations still lack the understanding of the impact and are unprepared for a cyberattack.  

With its growing prominence, cybersecurity should be a strategic priority for businesses of all sizes. With expertise in cybersecurity, Cyber Chasse will tailor a solution that will close the threat landscape to your organization. Contact us today to proactively curb the rising cost of cybercrimes.