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The Average Cost of a Data Breach has Doubled Since 2018

The average cost of a data breach including consumer identity information in the United States reached $9.5 million in 2021, up 16 percent from 2020 and twice as much as the average remediation cost in 2018. This comes on the heels of a nearly 300 percent increase in data breaches in 2021.

The 2022 Consumer Identity Breach Report from ForgeRock found that security issues associated with supply chain and third-party suppliers were responsible for nearly one quarter of all data breaches in 2021, when the total number of data breaches increased by 297 percent. In terms of the number of records compromised, data breaches from unauthorized access were responsible for half.

Data breaches were not only more plentiful in 2021, but the personally identifiable information (PII) that was compromised was frequently more sensitive with 60 percent of records breached including either or both Social Security Numbers and dates of birth. Over 2 billion records compromised in data breaches included username and password combinations, a 35 percent increase year-over-year.

As a result, the average cost of remediating data breaches was up sharply as well, increasing by 16 percent to an average cost of $9.5 million. For retail specifically, the average cost of a data breach was $3.27 million in the US.

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