It has been an uneasy trading day for LandMark White Ltd (ASX: LMW) following yesterday morning’s (2nd October 2019) announcement that an Information Technology consultant contracted with the company was arrested in relation to a data breach incident earlier in late January and May of this year. Landmark White Ltd is an Australian based firm which offers independent commercial and residential property valuation and expert property advice nationwide. The company has also been known to lend their expertise to government, banking, and agribusiness sectors; providing litigation, strata management, and tax services in addition to their property valuation suite.
Data Breach Devastation – Lessons from LandMark White (Credit: CSO)
LandMark White opened on a loss this morning, reflecting general market conditions across the wider ASX and closed this afternoon trading at $0.16 per share, experiencing a 5.88% decrease since open. This overall represents a 46% decrease since year-to-date where it was trading at $0.35 per share, with a 52-week high of $0.48 per share. This tumultuous trading year was brought on by the breach of sensitive client information, where some 137,500 data records were revealed on the dark web. LandMark White subsequently disclosed the data breach incident, citing that clients previously engaged with the company during the period of 4th January 2011 and 23rd January 2019 were at risk of the breach. Following this announcement, LandMark White advised clients to remain vigilant before requesting a series of trading halts on the ASX since the controversy first begin.
Since yesterday, the alleged contractor behind the data breach has been charged with 15 offences relating to the sabotage, following a three-month investigation which has since revealed that more than 170,000 records were at stake. In response to the update, LandMark White management has made statements advising clients that considerable investment and system enhancements had been made to ensure compliance and certification against ISO 27001 – Information Security standards. The valuation firm has been quoted to expect a bounce back from its FY19 net loss of $15.1 million by the second quarter of 2020, in what management has expressed as "the light is no longer at the end of the tunnel, but right in our faces."
It remains to be seen whether LandMark White will be able to fully recover from the incident, however acting chief executive, Tim Rabbit, has expressed confidence that the embattled group will be able to restore investor and client confidence.
This article has been prepared by the Australian Stock Report Pty Ltd (AFSL: 301 682. ABN: 94 106 863 978)
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