While the customers impacted by the recent SolarWinds Corp. cyberattack are rightly being described as victims, they are nonetheless facing significant costs stemming from the incident.
SolarWinds’ customers will need to determine whether any of their data was accessed or exfiltrated. Making that determination requires a digital forensics investigation, typically involving a third-party security vendor.
First, the Forensic Investigation
The forensics bill depends on factors such as the number and types of devices and systems on a network, the geographic distribution of the network, and whether the customer already had a contract with a security vendor to provide such services in the event of a security incident.
If investigators determine that certain categories of personal information of residents of U.S. states or certain foreign countries was accessed or exfiltrated from a SolarWinds customer, the victim will need to provide notices to affected individuals. It is considered a best practice to offer credit repair and monitoring services and call centers to assist affected individuals.
Depending on its contracts, the victim company also may be required to notify its business customers and vendors and to reimburse them for expenses they incur in investigating and mitigating the effects of the breach and providing notifications. It may also be required to indemnify them for third-party lawsuits and regulatory proceedings.
The victim company may also be required to notify regulators or state attorneys general. Such agencies may issue fines if their investigations find that the company’s cybersecurity practices were not adequate or that the company did not notify within a required time frame. Additionally, the victim company may incur substantial costs in defending consumer, business partner, or shareholder derivative lawsuits.
Furthermore, after it has been determined that an adversary has accessed a network, there is a debate about whether any device on the network can be trusted and remain in use. Many IT security practitioners recommend fully rebuilding a network that has been breached by malware.
Take Proactive Steps to Address Potential Liability
Once the security incident has occurred, there are limits to what a company can do to minimize its liability. It can work cooperatively with its business partners to reduce the likelihood that they will sue. But other costs, such as class action suits, regulatory fines, or legal fees are considerably less controllable.
Not surprisingly, the best time to address potential liability for a security incident is before it happens. All companies, regardless of whether they were victims of the SolarWinds breach, should consider taking the following proactive measures:
- Contracts with business partners should have reasonable limitations of liability and the implications of the cost of data breach provisions and indemnities should be carefully scrutinized, not just for each contract as it is negotiated, but in the aggregate for all contracts.
- Companies should have cyber-insurance policies in place and, because the details of cyber-insurance coverage vary, they should also have a good working knowledge of what is and is not covered by the policies.
- Companies should follow reasonable cybersecurity practices, not only to reduce the chances of experiencing a security incident, but to reduce the likelihood of being fined or successfully sued if an incident outside their control occurs.
- Companies should regularly conduct a risk assessment and develop and update a written security plan based on the risk assessment.
In fact, many statutes and regulatory frameworks, such as the New York SHIELD Act, the Massachusetts Standards for the Protection of Personal Information, the rules and guidelines issued under the federal Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, and New York’s Department of Financial Services Cybersecurity Regulation, require risk assessments, written security plans, and the use of reasonable cybersecurity measures.
Also, the California Consumer Privacy Act gives private litigants a right to sue if their personal information is exfiltrated as a result of a company’s failure to use reasonable security measures.
Assess Future Risk, Take Compliance Steps
What security measures are reasonable is heavily driven by the risk assessment. Recognized standards such as ISO 27001, the National Institutes of Standards and Technology Cybersecurity Framework, or the Center for Internet Security Critical Security Controls can be used to determine what is reasonable. Using an accredited outside vendor to certify compliance can help establish the proper diligence.
Common best practices include network segmentation, appropriate logging, use of intrusion detection systems, multi-factor authentication, use of current encryption standards in connection with data at rest and in transit, strong password requirements, use of password managers, regularly backing up data and testing the restoration of data, patching and vulnerability management, and regularly testing security controls and incident responses. Data retention policies also should not be overlooked , since data that a company has not retained cannot be the subject of a data breach.
Educating employees about risks and best practices is also important. Additionally, companies should foster close multi-stakeholder coordination and communication about security. Representatives from the security organization, legal, IT, procurement, and product or sales groups should be included in the discussions.
Companies have exposure to significant potential liability arising from the SolarWinds security incident and a short set of options for limiting that liability. The best time for a company to limit its liability for security incidents is before they happen.
This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. or its owners.
Andrew Baer is chair of the Technology, Privacy & Data Security group at Cozen O’Connor where he focuses his practice on cutting-edge technology transactions on both the buy-side and sell-side, cloud computing, data privacy, security compliance, software, and transactions in the digital advertising ecosystem.
Christopher Dodson is an attorney at Cozen O’Connor, where he focuses his practice on privacy, technology, and regulatory law. He works extensively with clients on issues rated to compliance with the GDPR, CCPA, and privacy and data security laws.
Kansans Named the 2020 National Leader in Identity Thefts
Recent statistics on identity theft reveal that identity theft reports doubled in 2020, with Kansas ranking first for the number of reports.
The increase in the number of reported identity theft cases is linked to the pandemic, as the majority of the reported cases concern unemployment benefits. The number of such cases in Kansas was higher than any other state: Over 38,000 Kansans had their identity stolen to submit fraudulent unemployment claims.
According to Amber Shultz, the acting secretary of the Kansas Department of Labor, these false unemployment claims exploded in numbers at the beginning of July – more than 35% of the applications were found to be fraudulent.
The department also stated that the trend was visible across the US and tried to combat it by implementing a three-day hold on claims and verifying each claim before approving it. However, with the number of claims exceeding 1 million, discerning which were legitimate was a challenging task. According to Attorney General Derek Schmidt, this has unfortunately caused a loss of millions of taxpayers’ money.
As the pandemic continues, identity theft is expected to remain a threat, so it is crucial to have some preventive measures set in place, from shredding important papers to setting stronger passwords on personal accounts. Relying on identity theft protection services is another good idea, as these can monitor the web for a specific set of data and keep individuals safe online.
However, for those who fear that their identity has been compromised, the recommended route is to inform the Federal Trade Commission and then place a fraud alert with any of the three credit bureaus. Informing financial institutions should be the next step. If repairing the identity theft damage is too time-consuming, there is the option of hiring one of the credit repair companies to handle the task.
Credit Repair Services Market Research Report, Growth Trends and Competitive Analysis 2021-2027 – Clark County Blog
Based on the Region:
• North America (USA, Canada and Mexico)
• Europe (Germany, France, Great Britain, Russia and Italy)
• Asia Pacific (China, Japan, Korea, India, and Southeast Asia)
• South America (Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, etc.)
• Middle East and Africa (Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Nigeria, and South Africa)
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The Credit Repair Services market report has been segregated based on various categories such as product type, application, end-user, and region. Each segment is rated based on CAGR, share and growth potential. In the regional analysis, the report highlights the potential region that is expected to create opportunities in the Credit Repair Services market in the coming years. This segmented analysis will surely prove to be a useful tool for readers, stakeholders and market participants to get a complete picture of the Credit Repair Services market and its growth potential in the years to come.
Key Benefits of the Report:
- Global, regional, country, product type, and application market size and their forecast from 2021-2028
- Identification and detailed analysis on key market dynamics, such as drivers, restraints, opportunities, and challenges influencing the growth of the market
- Detailed analysis on industry outlook with market-specific Porter’s Five Forces analysis, PESTLE analysis, and Value Chain, to better understand the market and build expansion strategies
- Identification of key market players and comprehensively analyze their market share and core competencies, detailed financial positions, key products, and unique selling points
- Analysis of key player’s strategic initiatives and competitive developments, such as joint ventures, mergers, and new product launches in the market
- Expert interviews and their insights on market shift, current, and future outlook, and factors impacting vendors short term and long term strategies
- Detailed insights on emerging regions, product types, applications with qualitative and quantitative information and facts
- Identification of the key patents filed in the field of Credit Repair Services
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Some Points from TOC
Chapter 1 Market Overview
Chapter 2 Company Profiles
Chapter 3 Market Competition by Players
Chapter 4 Market Size Segment by Type
Chapter 5 Market Size Segment by Application
Chapter 6 North America by Country, Type, and Application
Chapter 7 Europe by country, type and application
Chapter 8 Asia Pacific by Region, Type, and Application
Chapter 9 South America by Country, Type and Application
Chapter 10 Middle East and Africa by Country, Type, and Application
Chapter 11 Research Findings and Conclusions
Chapter 12 Appendix
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Dustin Aab on the power of working hard to achieve success
The more closely we look around us, the more we get nearer to reality where so many individuals work with a certain grit, commitment and dedication to achieve what their hearts desire.
These individuals are the ones that not only work to attain their set goals in their career but also help others in their journeys. Talking about the sales and consulting business, which is growing each passing day across nations as professionals from various industries aim to get nearer their visions and aspirations in business, we can notice the boom in this niche; thanks to professional entrepreneurs like Dustin Aab.
Based out of California, Dustin Aab is a leading American entrepreneur, who excels in sales and consulting and has been shaping the careers of hundreds of people through his astute skills and knowledge as a true professional in the industry. It was seven years ago that Dustin Aab had started his career in the sales arena and from the past six years owns his sales company, under which he is working with the mission to turn the desires and dreams of professionals into reality through his mentorship and coaching in sales.
Dustin Aab’s sales and consulting business is all about providing the best of the industry products and services that help individuals change their financial status and situation. His life has been full of challenges, but Dustin Aab very early had realized the power of working hard and putting in every possible effort to make a successful career; hence, after working so hard for years, he has been able to create the financial freedom he wanted by becoming an entrepreneur. He hopes to change as many lives as he can in his career and take people nearer to their definition of success. He does sales mentorship and consulting for not just individuals, but companies as well.
Some of the specific services he offers through his company include Real estate, amazon automation, sales training mentorship, credit repair, Instagram growth and branding, life insurance and solar.
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