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Photo: Dave Whitney/Getty Images

Taking into account the full-spectrum costs associated with a data breach, the average breach costs U.S. companies $8.19 million, according to a new study from IBM and the Ponemon Institute.

The big picture: It's not cheap to be breached. But the same study shows that a little foresight can save a large chunk of damages.

Background The IBM study based its statistical models on a wide variety of direct and indirect costs, ranging from the price of remediating a breach and paying for customer credit protection to IT downtime and reputational damage.

By the numbers: The average cost in the U.S. was more than twice the global cost of a breach ($3.92 million).

  • Small firms take proportionally much greater damage. Globally, a firm of 500-1000 employees lost $3500 per employee per breach. A firm of more than 25,000 lost only $204 per employee.
  • The most expensive breaches were in the healthcare sector, where the average cost per record stolen is more than twice as high as in any other field.
  • The costs take some time to materialize. Only 67% of the costs came in the first year — 22% came in year 2, and 11% in year 3 and beyond.

The other side: Companies with an incident response team and a well-tested plan in place saved $1.23 million during a breach.

  • But a plan can be relative to the size of a business. “Small businesses think plans need to be something complex,” said Wendi Whitmore, global lead for IBM X-Force incident response and intelligence services. “But it can just be as simple as having a list of numbers to call."

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The decades-long building boom that remade Washington D.C. is screeching to a halt, undone by broader construction trends and the legacy of the post-pandemic workplace.

Why it matters: Dizzying construction has reshaped the city, reinvigorated downtown and created bustling new communities. 

Facebook fights for its image

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Facebook is ditching apologies and taking a more combative stance against its critics as it faces a new barrage of negative coverage and leaked internal reports.

Driving the news: As part of the new posture, Facebook started testing placing positive messages about itself in users' News Feeds last month, according to a New York Times story Tuesday.

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Charter schools boomed during the pandemic

Expand chart
Data: National Alliance for Public Charter Schools; Map: Sara Wise/Axios

Charter schools picked off hundreds of thousands of public school students across the U.S. during the pandemic, according to a new analysis from the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.

Why it matters: The pandemic has weakened America's public education system, as Zoom classes, teacher fatigue and student disengagement take their toll. And that hobbled system is shedding students to charter schools, private schools and homeschooling.