Cyber Security Hits a Nerve With Media During Holiday Shopping Season


By Sean Smith

Did you battle the crowds on Black Friday? Surf the web for deals on Cyber Monday?

Chances are pretty good that you did at least one of those activities…if not both. The National Retail Federation reports that sales on Thanksgiving topped $1 billion. Black Friday yielded $1.5 billion. Estimates are that Cyber Monday totals will eclipse both, perhaps totaling as much as $2 billion.

News of a strong opening weekend to the holiday shopping season made headlines across the country. Similarly, however, the media also focused an unprecedented level of attention on issues related to cyber security and consumer shopping. Concerns about identify theft (and the ever increasing number of data breaches impacting national retail businesses) have made the issue one of the biggest business stories of the year.

Media outlets from ABC News through the USA Today included extensive coverage targeting issues related toward credit card security during the busiest retail shopping weekend of the year.

This increased media attention also landed locally at Schneider Downs. Eric Wright, shareholder at Schneider Downs and leader of the firm’s Technology practice, was in high demand in November. Following a major presentation at ISACA Pittsburgh’s Information Security Awareness Day, Eric was featured both in print and broadcast media, as reporters sought his insights regarding the depth of concern regarding data breaches.

In light of the sustained interest in this topic, it seems appropriate to share a few links highlighting Eric’s interviews with local media.

Cybersecurity experts warn Pittsburgh conference about dangers of hacking was published by the Pittsburgh Tribune Review.

Also in Pittsburgh, KDKA-TV’s business reporter, Jon Delano, interviewed Eric for a story on Cyber Monday security threats.

As the holidays approach, it makes sense to also note that this groundswell of awareness is not limited to the media. Our Technology Advisors practice continues to field questions from corporations about essential security measures to help reduce the threat of a data breach or hack. If data security remains on the radar for your organization, contact Eric Wright via email at ewright@schneiderdowns.com.

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This advice is not intended or written to be used for, and it cannot be used for, the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties that may be imposed, or for promoting, marketing or recommending to another person, any tax related matter.


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