Trends Report

The ROI Of A Privacy Program

A Total Economic Impact™ Analysis Uncovers Reasonable Investment Levels

April 14th, 2008
Jennifer Albornoz Mulligan
With contributors:
Jon Erickson , Jonathan Penn , Allison Viglianti


Data protection and data privacy have become a board-level issue as regulators impose fines and requirements and customers react to the publicity of data breaches. Some organizations have implemented an effective data privacy program to keep data private, but they are unsure of what investment is appropriate and how to measure their results. A Total Economic Impact™ (TEI) analysis of privacy programs indicates that an organization will likely see the benefits of a reduced probability of a data breach and greater employee and process efficiency, providing gains of more than $400,000 a year in our example scenario. These benefits need to be balanced against the costs of privacy training and assessment provided by your internal privacy team and external service providers. Our analysis of a typical organization considering privacy programs shows an annual positive return after the first year of 38% with a net positive return occurring within two to three years. Using Forrester's TEI methodology, organizations can model their specific characteristics using our values as a starting point for a customized analysis.

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