5 consequences of data loss and how to avoid them

5 consequences of data loss and how to avoid them

Posted by HTG

Nearly 40 percent of businesses have reported data breaches in the last 12 months. One in five of those businesses will suffer some sort of loss as a result, whether it’s data, money or other assets.

It’s not always cyber-crime to blame though. You can lose data in a variety of ways, both intentionally and unintentionally. It can be from human error, software corruption, viruses or even outages.

Regardless of the reason, data loss can have dire consequences.

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What are the consequences of data loss?

Here are five damaging outcomes you’ll want to avoid.

1. Financial loss

UK companies spent nearly £3 million recovering from data breaches in 2020, according to IBM. The average cost to a company suffering a data breach is around £8,000.

This is the most common consequence of data loss and normally the one on the executive’s mind. Scammers are out for money and they don’t discriminate based on company size.

2. Broken trust

Building trust takes time, but losing trust takes one poor decision.” - Young Entrepreneur Council, INC.

Forty-six percent of organisations suffered reputational damage as the result of a data breach.

You don’t want to end up as a headline for all the wrong reasons. News travels fast these days and any reputation damage will haunt you for years to come.

3. Disruption

Forty-nine percent of surveyed enterprises list data recovery as a top technical challenge.

Recovering from data loss takes time and it’ll cause IT disruptions right across your organisation. This interference can seriously affect your day-to-day business operations.

4. Legal action

You’re obliged by law to take all possible measures to protect personal data. That goes for employees and customers. Failing to do so can land you in some serious trouble.

You probably remember the legal action that hit Facebook recently. The social media giant leaked the personal information of some 533 million users and was the subject of several court hearings as a result.

5. Business closure

It doesn’t bear thinking about it, but data loss can be a slippery slope to business closure.

SMEs are already facing extreme financial costs as a result of the pandemic. In fact, it’s estimated that COVID-19 has cost SMEs upwards of £126.6bn.

In the event of data loss, companies have to fork out extra funds on recovery, legal fees and decreased productivity. This further drains finances and adds more issues into the mix.

How can you avoid these consequences?

Now that we’ve listed the consequences, let’s discuss the ways in which you can avoid catastrophe.

Up your security

Make sure you keep your team secure.

As cyber-attacks make up a vast proportion of data loss incidents, you need to ensure your cyber-security is top-notch. A cyber-security assessment can help you highlight areas that need improving.

Backup, backup, backup!

It goes without saying that ensuring your data is backed up is a must. Luckily, many up-to-date applications have this as a feature.

Over at Microsoft’s Trust Centre, they’ve highlighted the ways that M365 backs up your work and protects you against data loss. As well as that, Microsoft Endpoint Data Loss Prevention extends the monitoring and protection capabilities of DLP to sensitive data on Windows 10 devices.

Train your teams

Rolling out training across your organisation ensures your employees work securely.

This might include:

  • How to recognise and flag potential security risks
  • Secure working practices
  • Sensitive data compliance

Secure your data today

There’s no doubt about it: data loss can be serious. But you can minimise the risks by taking proper precautions, such as backing up, increasing your security and training your employees.

If you’d like some more expert advice around security risks to watch out for (and how to prevent them), watch our webinar.

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