It’s no secret that data breaches can occur at any time and are becoming increasingly commonplace. In 2014, 43% of companies experienced at least one breach effecting more than 1,000 customer data records (Ponemon Institute, Sept. 2014). If the unthinkable happens and a customer data breach occurs, does your company have a comprehensive and effective response plan in place? This was the key question coming out of the latest Agari webinar, “The End of the World is Just the Beginning“. How successful a company is in responding to a breach can make all the difference in maintaining customer trust.
Although 73% of companies say they have a breach response plan in place, only 1/3 of them actually believe in the effectiveness of their own plan (Ponemon Institute, Sept. 2014). Because many companies admittedly haven’t planned well, they may not know how to successfully prevent negative opinion, perform end to end testing or keep their response plan updated. When a breach occurs, the response plan is the key resource for protecting the brand, the customers and ensuring the highest, most effective level of “damage control”.
The most critical aspect of the plan is customer communication. Knowing how to securely and confidently alert customers in the event of a breach, and share details about how it’s being handled and what they should do, helps prevent the spread of panic and negative opinion. How should companies securely integrate email into their breach response? Taking a few simple, practical steps will help establish secure customer email communication for when it’s needed most. Here are 5 key takeaways:
- Use one, easy to remember email address with primary brand name
- Turn on DMARC to secure the email channel in advance and achieve greater visibility
- Distinguish messaging on secure vs. unsecured email addresses
- Preemptively communicate the plan across web, media and social platforms
- Test the plan end to end and inform customers of what to expect
Companies need to act now and secure their email channel so that it can play a major role in their overall breach response plan. By proactively securing their email communication, companies can take major strides in controlling the flow of information after a breach and ensure that their customers receive timely and trusted notifications. Considering the far reaching and lasting fallout that often occurs from any type of security breach, having a reliable response plan in place has never been more crucial.
At Agari, we believe your brand and your reputation should always be under your control. Let Agari help as you develop your data breach response plan. We’ve already partnered with some of the world’s biggest brands to secure their email channels, enhancing the trust their customers place in them.