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New Transparency Demands: SEC’s Four-Day Cyber Breach Disclosure Rule

A call to action for CIOs and CISOs.
TNCR Staff

In a landmark decision aimed at safeguarding investors and enhancing transparency, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has adopted rules compelling all publicly traded companies to promptly disclose any cybersecurity breaches that could impact their financial standing.

The rules, passed by a narrow 3-2 vote, require companies to report such incidents within four days, except in cases where immediate disclosure might pose significant risks to national security or public safety.

Why it matters: 

For technology leaders, the SEC’s new rule mandating timely disclosure of cybersecurity breaches holds paramount importance. As stewards of their organization’s technological infrastructure and security, technology leaders are directly responsible for safeguarding sensitive data and protecting their company’s reputation. The rule compels them to adopt a proactive and robust approach to cybersecurity risk management, ensuring that any breaches are promptly identified, assessed, and reported to relevant stakeholders

  • By adhering to the four-day disclosure window, technology leaders can mitigate potential damage and financial losses, while also demonstrating a commitment to transparency and accountability to their shareholders and investors.
  • In an attempt to foster greater transparency, the SEC hopes to encourage improvements in cyber defenses across industries, though the new regulations could prove challenging for smaller companies with limited resources.
  • The annual disclosure requirement on cybersecurity risk management and executive expertise highlights the increasing importance of having qualified leaders well-versed in cybersecurity practices.

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