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[ISN] Businesses More Concerned With Reputation Than Fines


By Tony Bradley
July 20, 2011

There has been an epidemic of data breaches in recent months, prompting action in the United States Congress to introduce new legislation to protect consumer data. A recent survey, however, found that most businesses are more concerned with their own brand integrity and reputation than whatever punitive damages might result from compliance mandates.

The Secure and Fortify Electronic Data Act--better known as the SAFE Data Act, is currently making its way through the United States House of Representatives. If passed, the legislation will create a national framework for information security and data protection, along with national laws governing disclosure when a breach occurs.

Testifying before a House subcommittee in June, BSA President and CEO Robert Holleyman, said "It requires organizations that hold sensitive personal information to implement reasonable security procedures. It creates market incentives to adopt strong security measures. It ensures that consumers will be notified when a breach puts them at risk of identity theft, fraud or other unlawful activity," adding, "By creating a uniform, national framework that preserves an enforcement role for state authorities, it also streamlines compliance burdens. The net effect will be good for businesses and consumers alike."

On the other hand, a recent survey conducted by jointly by CyberSource and Trustwave reveals that businesses are not intimidated by legislation, or concerned about financial penalties associated with compliance mandates and regulations. What businesses are concerned with is their own reputation and the integrity of their brand.


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