What’s At Risk When You Transfer Sensitive Data?

Dec 29, 2021

“You’ve been the victim of a data breach.”

That’s a sentence you never want to have to say to your customers, but the reality is, the threat is never far away. Hackers are getting more sophisticated and with the increase in remote workers (and subsequent software changes, additional points of access, unsecured home networks, etc) the threat might be closer than ever before.

Maintaining compliance with the myriad of regulations that pertain to your industry is a pain, but the penalties for non-compliance—$3.86 million on average, globally—and the impact on your brand are even more so.

In this blog post, we’ll share several risks your company can face when transferring sensitive data and the best plan of defense.

1. Damage To Your Brand

It might seem counterintuitive to release your mistakes to the public, but you’re legally obligated to notify your customers in the event of a breach or you could face even greater penalties. And transparency can go a long way in restoring their faith in you. Ask Uber how attempting to cover things up worked out for them.

Even if your breach doesn’t make it into the news, airing your dirty laundry for the world to see, angry customers will likely tell other people and post about it on social media. In this case, bad press is exactly that: Bad.

According to a recent PCI Pal study, 83% of consumers will stop spending at a business for a few months after a breach, and 21% will never do business with them again. There’s no doubt you’ll be feeling the effects of a breach for years to come.

2. The Financial Impact

If you experience a data breach, you know you’re about to take a financial hit. At the least, revenue will drop as you lose those clients from #1, and it isn’t uncommon that operations are halted entirely while an investigation is taking place. You may even face civil lawsuits that could result in significant settlements and legal fees.

Then there are the regulatory penalties. The size of your business, as well as the duration and scope of the breach itself, can all factor into the amount you will be fined.

Here are just a few examples of the fines that could be levied against you:

  • HIPAA – $100-$50,000 per violation
  • PCI – $5,000 to $100,000 per month, until compliance is achieved
  • Dodd-Frank Act – up to $150,000 (civil penalty) and $725,000 (corporations)
  • Sarbanes-Oxley Act – up to $5 million

Note: If you don’t know which of these apply to your organization, it is time to do a deep dive. Seriously.

3. Legal Repercussions

Although it’s rare, individuals in your organization could even face a prison sentence if the courts determine that they knowingly exposed sensitive data or helped to cover up a security breach.

Aggravated identity theft itself comes with a prison term of 2 years, and depending on what tier the infraction lands on, many regulations come with additional criminal charges. Guilty parties could receive a max sentence of 10 years for HIPAA violations and for Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX), they could be facing up to 20 years.

Cleaning House

The best defense against a security breach is defense. No matter how small your business and how complex the regulatory jargon is, you’re still responsible. Look into the types of data you’re storing and transferring, and ask software providers about their security.

File transferring software is a great place to start. Data in motion is often easier to target, but not if you partner with the right company. Botdoc blends convenient and easy-to-use file transferring with top-notch security, reducing overall processing times without requiring your clients to download apps or create logins.

The Botdoc Way

Botdoc is the first-ever easy, remote, and secure file transport service that works via text messaging and email with end-to-end encryption. Our solution is always simple to use because the patient experience and facility security is everything to us. With Botdoc, you’ll close transactions at least 50% faster with no pins, no passwords, no logins, no accounts, no apps, and no software to download.


To get started today, simply schedule a demo below.