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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."

Go deeper

UN Security Council meeting on Israel-Gaza as fighting enters 7th day

Smoke billows from a fire following Israeli airstrikes on multiple targets in Gaza on May 16. Photo: Mohammed Abed/AFP via Getty Images

The United Nations Security Council was preparing to meet Sunday, as the aerial bombardment between Israel and Hamas between entered a seventh day.

The latest: Four Palestinians died in airstrikes early Sunday, as Israeli forces bombed the home of Gaza's Hamas chief, Yehya al-Sinwar, per Reuters.

6 hours ago - World

In photos: Protests in U.S., across the world over Israeli–Palestinian conflict

A protest march in support of Palestinians near the Washington monument in Washington, D.C. on May 15. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

Thousands of people rallied across the U.S. and the world Saturday following days of violence in Gaza and Israel that's killed at least 145 Palestinians, including 41 children, and eight Israelis, per AP.

The big picture: Most demonstrations were in support of Palestinians. There were tense scenes between pro-Israeli government protesters and pro-Palestinian demonstrators in Winnipeg, Canada, and Leipzig, Germany, but no arrests were made, CBS News and DW.com report.

Updated 14 hours ago - World

Biden in call with Netanyahu raises concerns about civilian casualties in Gaza

Photo: Ahmad Gharabli/Nicholas Kamm/Getty Images

President Biden spoke to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Saturday and raised concerns about civilian casualties in Gaza and the bombing of the building that housed AP and other media offices, according to Israeli officials.

The big picture: At least 140 Palestinians, including dozens of children, have been killed in Gaza since fighting between Israel and Hamas began Monday, according to Palestinian health officials. Nine people, including two children, have been killed by Hamas rockets in Israel.