Average cost of a data breach in Australia up 32%


IBM has released key Australian data points from its recent global survey, which was covered under the Cost Of Data Breach Report 2023 launched last month.

The average cost of a data breach in Australia has grown 32% in the last 5 years, reaching AUD $4.03 million according to the report findings.

Chris Hockings, Chief Technology Officer IBM Security, Asia Pacific: “In addition to reducing the time to identify and contain a data breach, the extensive use of security AI and automation is also a crucial factor in delivering significant cost savings to breached organisations in Australia.”

“In 2023, the industry is reaching a tipping point in the maturity curve for AI in security operations where enterprise grade AI capabilities can be trusted and automatically acted upon via orchestrated response. This will unlock tangible benefits for speed and efficiency, which are desperately needed in today’s business landscape where early detection and fast response can significantly reduce the impact and losses from breaches.

IBM Report: Cost of A Data Breach – key Australian findings

  • The average cost of a data breach in Australia has grown 32% in the last 5 years, reaching AUD $4.03 million per the 2023 Cost of a Data Breach Report.
  • Detection and escalation costs reached AUD $1.68 million-the highest portion of breach costs, indicating a shift towards more complex breach investigations.
  • The top 3 industries with the highest average breach costs in Australia include: Financial Services (AUD $5.56 million), Technology (AUD $5.06 million) and Education (AUD $4.61 million), higher than the average cost across the country (AUD $4.03 million).
  • Across all Australian breaches studied the two most common attack types were phishing scams (over 22%), and stolen or compromised credentials (over 17%).
  • AI and automation had the biggest impact on speed of breach identification and containment for studied organisations.
  • Australian organisation who did not utilise security AI and automation in combating cyber threats experienced breaches costing on average AUD $2.14 million more than those who deployed these technologies extensively.
  • Organisations with extensive use of both security AI and automation experienced a data breach lifecycle that was 117 days shorter compared to studied organizations that have not deployed these technologies (225 days versus 342 days).
  • Most often breached data was stored across multiple types of environments in Australia (32%), followed by private cloud at 28% and on premises at 21%.

Some key findings in the 2023 IBM report at a global level include:

  • The global average cost of a data breach in 2023 was USD 4.45 million, a 15% increase over 3 years.
  • Globally, the study also found that 95% of studied organisations, including Australian organisations, have experienced more than one breach.
  • However, breached organisations were more likely to pass incident costs onto consumers (57%) than to increase security investments (51%).

You can read the full report here.