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Costs Of Cyberattacks Continue To Rise

Pitney Bowes, a global technology company that provides postage meters and other mailing equipment and services, recently experienced a cyberattack that shut down a segment of its operations.

Before the organization confirmed the attack, customers had already shared on social media that they were having problems with the organization's mailing products.

Customers using fulfillment, delivery, and returns services in the global e-commerce division, as well as those using presort services, had their service disrupted by the attack. The malware prevented customers from accessing their online accounts and the Pitney Bowes Supplies web store. As a result, customers with postage meters and SendPro products could not refill their meters, although those with funds loaded could print postage.

According to a statement issued by the organization, a malware attack encrypted some of its systems, which disrupted customer access to certain services. The statement said there is no evidence that the hackers accessed employee or customer data. It did not say who was responsible for the attack.

The organization's technical team, along with third-party consultants, was working to quickly repair the affected systems. Pitney Bowes provided a help page to keep customers informed of the organization's progress in restoring services. Paul Schott "Pitney Bowes hit by cyber-attack" stamfordadvocate.com (Oct. 14, 2019).

Commentary

A report published in 2019 by Radware and Merrill Research states that the average cost per incident of a cyberattack increased from $3 million in 2018 to $4.6 million in the first half of 2019. In addition, the number of data breaches that cost organizations more than $10 million doubled between last year and this year.

Obviously, one major expense of a cyberattack is the amount of money it costs to fix. Pitney Bowes had to hire third-party consultants to help them remove the malware and restore operations, and their assistance likely came with a considerable price tag.

Expenses associated with recovering from a cyberattack can include time spent removing malware or ransomware from the network, restoring data and operations, and getting services back online. If customer or employee personal data was breached in the attack, costs can quickly skyrocket if you must provide credit monitoring and other identity theft protection services to all affected customers.

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