News

Equifax data breach is a security disaster
Date: 25 Sep 2017 By: CRI Group

The latest massive data breach might be the most serious yet. Equifax Inc, a U.S.-based consumer credit reporting agency, announced this month that it had fallen victim to a cyber security breach that exposed the personal data of more than $143 million consumers. 

The stunning revelation has caused enormous concern across the U.S. and the world. Equifax collects and aggregates information on over 800 million individual consumers and more than 88 million businesses worldwide. To make things worse, it collects more than enough data to make identity thieves salivate: Equifax has personal data from consumers that includes full names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, and, in some cases, driver license numbers.

The implications go beyond the 143 million people who must now closely monitor their credit indefinitely for any signs of identity theft. It also has possible criminal ramifications, as USA Today reports that some executives at the company are being investigated for allegedly unloading stock before the breach was announced (see “Feds reportedly investigate Equifax executives' stock sales”).

How can this happen? How can a company responsible for safeguarding the most critical personal information imaginable find itself admitting to such a massive security failure? Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for organizations to fall victim to those who would steal data. While it may be on a smaller scale than Equifax, it happens around the world on a regular basis.

That is why CRI Group has a team of trained corporate security & resilience experts who are focused on protecting such valuable information on every level. After all, it’s too late after a breach has occurred. An organization can face criminal and civil penalties, not to mention loss of trust and reputation among all of its stakeholders. A data breach tells consumers that you cannot protect their data, and thus are not to be trusted with their business.

CRI Group’s corporate due diligence services experts ask the hard questions, especially to any organization conducting business on a global level. For example:

How do you manage the risks to digital and physical assets? CRI Group can put measures in place that provide layers of cyber security resilience to thwart hackers and those trying to steal your data.

How quickly can we respond to a serious business crisis? CRI Group’s corporate due diligence services  can help you detect breach attempts before they succeed, and have a chance to damage your business.

Can the organisation rely on our third-party business partners to maintain appropriate levels of control? One of your biggest risks is what happens outside of your organization. Our third party risk management and due diligence services can help detect weaknesses among your partners, and alert you to risk areas.

The team at CRI Group can help you roadmap these risks and have sufficient action plans in place to deal with unforeseen threats to your business. Some risk factors cannot be completely avoided. But with the proper response plans in place, we can help bolster your corporate security and resilience, and help you protect your stakeholders’ valuable data. Learn more.