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Data breaches threaten $223bn of top brands’ value, finds report

16th March 2021 - Author: Matt Sheehan

A joint cybersecurity and brand value impact report by consulting firms Infosys and Interbrand has found that up to $223 billion of the brand value of the world’s largest brands could be at risk from a data breach.

cyber-securityTo quantify this risk, Infosys and Interbrand identified the brand factors most impacted when a company suffers a data breach – presence, affinity, and trust – and simulated the resulting brand value at risk in the event of a breach.

Industries such as technology, financial services and automotive might suffer a higher overall brand value at risk from data breaches, whereas luxury brands and consumer goods face greater value at risk as a percentage of their net income

Looking at the world’s 100 most valuable brands, the report found that technology industries faced up to $29 billion of brand value risk from data breaches, or up to 53% of 2020 net income.

Next, financial services have up to $2.6 billion of brand value risk, 52% of net income, and automotive has $4.2 billion, or 77% of income.

Infosys and Interbrand also recorded consumer goods as facing up to $5 billion of brand value risk, or 114% of 2020 net income, and luxury brands at $2.4 billion, or 115% of income.

“Cybersecurity for long was seen as a cost of doing business,” said Vishal Salvi, Chief Information Security Officer & Head Cyber Security Practice at Infosys. “However, in this digital age, where a company’s reputation is based on its ability to protect customer data and establish digital trust, cybersecurity is becoming a business differentiator.”

“Through this report, we bring a novel approach to quantifying the impact of a data breach to the brand value to help businesses understand and evaluate if the cybersecurity investments they are making are proportionate to the risk they face,” Salvi explained. “It also reinforces the need for CISOs to engage with the board and build a robust governance ecosystem while employing a ‘secure by design’ approach to safeguard their brand value and reputation.”

Ameya Kapnadak, Chief Growth Officer (India) at Interbrand, also commented: “There’s a fundamental shift in how brands engage with their customers.”

“As the lines between the physical and virtual worlds increasingly blur, and brands rely more and more on the digital world to create unique experiences for their customers, data breaches have the potential to dent the very core of the brand’s relationship with its customers,” Kapnadak added. “These shifts underscore the need to re-evaluate ‘hygiene’ aspects of customer experience, like cybersecurity.

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