Originally published in Payments Journal on July 31, 2019
There’s a very tough question on the table that no one can afford to ignore: If more than half of global IT and security executives say they actively fear the exposure of payment card data and other personal identifiable information, why are 70% of them not deploying measures such as encryption to maintain security? This troubling reality, one of many findings in the 2019 Thales Global Data Threat Report, provides a stark look at the state of payments security – and leaves a lot of data vulnerable
This isn’t entirely unexpected. Just ask any one of the estimated 3 billion people who fell victim to Yahoo’s data crisis. Or the 500 million people whose sensitive personal information was stolen in the Marriott breach. More than 43% of the entire American population was offered credit monitoring after hackers stole data from the Equifax servers, and now nearly a year and half later, whereabouts of that stolen data is still unknown.
Breaches over the past five years have become such a large part of the daily global news cycle, it’s more unusual to not see a data security story. And many security breaches don’t even make the news either because it’s no longer newsworthy when just a few thousand are affected, or a ransomware event is painstakingly kept completely out of the public eye.
The fact is, the internet wasn’t originally built with security in mind. But now, the limitless potential of how we conduct business online means this convenience is not going to go away. Demand will continue to increase while laws and policy lag behind the sustained push for innovation and greater access. It’s incumbent upon enterprises to step up – actually get a step ahead – to secure our most sensitive data and stop the cyber-crisis tidal wave that’s dominating the narrative.
No organization is safe from data security risks. Threats can be both external and internal, and even the most sophisticated companies get breached. Our study shows that the greater the level of sophistication, the more likely respondents are to say that they have been breached.
While we may never achieve an overwhelming sense of security, we’ve identified a three-pronged approach to achieving vast improvements that will put you and your customers a little more at ease: 1. adopting secure emerging technologies; 2. staying up to date on industry requirements; and 3. ensuring staff are fully trained in security protocols.
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For more information on the state of the payments industry, read our 2019 Global Payments Outlook Report: Part 1, the first in a two-part series in which 451 Research explores the top five trends shaping payments this year.