Soaring concerns over data security have pushed up the salaries of chief information security officers at top European firms to eye-watering levels, according to one recruitment consultancy, which claims CISOs can expect to trouser up to €1m (£850,000) a year.
According to global executive search firm DHR International, the rise in the number of cyber-attacks in the past five years has made the role of cyber-security experts increasingly important in the boardroom.
And while those at top end can now expect to receive mega bucks, those working in listed small and medium European companies are not exactly on the bread-line and are now being paid a minimum of €200,000 (£171,000).
DHR International partner Gert Stürzebecher commented: “CEOs have started to lose their jobs over data breaches and the financial impact of some individual data breaches now runs into the tens or hundreds of millions of euros. An issue as serious as that gets its own seat at the board.”
DHR cites the looming implementation of GDPR – in May next year – which could see companies that suffer a data breach face a fine of up to €20m (£17.2m) or 4% their annual global turnover, compared to a maximum existing penalty of £500,000.
A recent analysis of the fines dished out by the UK Information Commissioner’s Office revealed that under GDPR the mometary penalties would be 79 times higher – soaring from £880,500 to £69m – under the new regime.
As already reported by Decision Marketing, TalkTalk’s 2016 fine of £400,000 for security failings that allowed hackers to access customer data would rocket to nearly £60m under GDPR.
Fines given to small and medium-sized enterprises could have been disasterous, with Pharmacy2U’s fine of £130,000 ballooning to £4.4m – a significant proportion of its revenues and potentially enough to put it out of business.
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