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Reality TV is like a data breach. You can put all your stuff out there, only to find yourself buried under the backlash.
Every day, the media churns out more and more stories about merchants being breached by hackers and the ever increasing levels of fraud happening within the market. It’s like a bad episode of the Jersey Shore – everybody’s exposed, everybody’s mad, and no good comes from the Situation. The problem is, if you’re a small business owner, you probably can’t afford, or don’t have access to, highly paid consultants who can ensure that your business is properly protected against these security issues.
Numerous studies have shown that many small merchants are unaware of the steps they should take to protect their business from a data breach and fraud. These studies have found that not only are many small merchants unaware of their vulnerability, but they are also complacent about the impact a breach can have on their business.
Here’s one of the major problems with small businesses – it’s rare for a merchant to discover on their own that they have had a breach and that sensitive payment data has been stolen. Most events are detected by third parties, such as a bank or a card association that has begun to notice a rise in fraud and can trace it back to specific merchant. It’s critical that small business owners understand how sensitive customer data moves through their business processes in order to maintain that data’s security and integrity.
"In three short minutes, I destroyed a man's business, life, existence. I deleted him." - Elliot (Mr. Robot)
As a small business owner, if you are breached, what should you expect to incur in losses? The average cost of a data breach is around $40,000 and can reach or exceed $100,000.
The actual cost depends on several factors:
- Forensic Examination
- PCI Compliance Fees
- Reassessment for PCI Compliance
- Card Replacement Costs
- Notification to Customers
- Upgrade and/or Replace POS System
Data Breaches have a huge impact on brand reputation, and when it comes to credit card processing, posting a great selfie to Instagram isn’t going to fix it.
It’s no secret that data breaches have reached epidemic proportions. Just recently, the Kardashian and Jenner sisters launched mobile apps that were breached. Because of a misconfiguration, a developer gained access to the full names and email addresses of over 600,000 users who signed up for Kylie Jenner’s website. In addition, he pulled user information from her sisters’ websites.
According to recent studies, the three items that have the greatest impact on brand reputation are data breaches, poor customer service, and environmental disasters. The aftermath of a data breach can include long lasting damage to brand equity and reputation, and in many instances, put the small business owner out of business as a result of the extent of the fines.
Preparing for a breach beforehand, instead of waiting until it happens, is a practice that all businesses should adopt. Incident response plans can significantly help salvage a company’s reputation and reduce brand damage.
Bristol Pay is proud to deliver solutions that are Point-To-Point Encrypted and EMV Compliant – it handles both sides of the coin in terms of security (protection against breach and fraud). All of the products Bristol Pay offers are built with security in mind – protection for both the customer and the merchant – in order to keep personal information out of the public eye.