Ben Mitchell at DocsCorp explains the costs of sending the wrong emails to the wrong people

The data breaches that make headlines often follow a formula: network attacks perpetrated by cybercriminals, who target massive companies with millions of users, for financial gain. The endgame is to try to sell the stolen information on the dark web or use it to blackmail innocent victims. The kind of breach that is far more common, but less likely to be the subject of a gripping Netflix documentary, is one that involves human error. After all, there’s nothing thrilling about a plotline that climaxes when a secretary attaches the wrong spreadsheet to an email.

However, with over 124 billion business emails sent every day, there’s a real risk to organisations if a simple mistake in an email suddenly leads to regulatory scrutiny.

Of the more than 3,000 complaints reported to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) in the 2017–18 financial year, nearly 500 – or about 16% – were caused by sending an email to the wrong person. In the post-GDPR era, selecting the wrong ‘Jane’ or ‘John’ from Outlook’s autofill menu is all it takes to end up on the wrong side of a multimillion-pound fine

The skyrocketing cost of data breaches

When massive penalties were introduced as part of stricter data-protection laws, many people doubted that regulators would follow through. They believed that only the biggest and most public of companies would be subjected to fines ...

This article was first published in the October 2019 issue of Briefing 'Buying signals' click to read the full article

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