Security incidents aren't just embarrassing: they're expensive. A survey of IT professionals by security software developer Kaspersky Labs suggests that the average cost of a security breach is around $US50,000 in small and medium companies. In large organisations, that figure was even higher: $US649,000.
The study calculated the numbers based on a survey of 2895 IT professionals across the globe, including 109 Australians. (That gives us a larger than expected chunk of the total; the US was represented in 176 interviews, despite having more than 10 times our population.)
The chart above shows the costs associated with breaches, which go well beyond simply patching and retrieving data. The lesson? If your manager asks why money needs to be spent on IT security, point to the alternative.