SEC Cybersecurity Rules

Key Point: The decision making processes to determine whether a cybersecurity incident is material or not, should include documenting the factors behind each determination and should be practiced before an incident occurs.

In Parts I and II of this blog series, we discussed the compliance dates and the new definitions in the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission’s (the “SEC”) final rules (the “adopting release”) for cybersecurity disclosures and offered registrants suggestions for preparing the new disclosure required in their annual reports. In Part III, we offer planning suggestions for determining whether a cybersecurity incident is material and needs to be disclosed on a Current Report on Form 8-K, or whether the incident is not material.Continue Reading Twelve Planning Tips to Avoid Complications with the SEC’s Cybersecurity Disclosure Rules: Part III

Key Point: Drafting the material cybersecurity risks disclosures in registrants’ annual reports will require careful planning to avoid giving malicious cyber actors a blueprint of the corporate network.

Part I of this blog series discussed the compliance dates and the new definitions in the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission’s (the “SEC”) final rules (the “adopting release”) for cybersecurity disclosures. In Part II, we offer ideas for preparing the disclosure required in the registrant’s annual report about the registrant’s material cybersecurity risks and the governance structure used to assess and manage these risks.Continue Reading Twelve Planning Tips to Avoid Complications with the SEC’s Cybersecurity Disclosure Rules: Part II

Key Point: To avoid inadvertently increasing enforcement and litigation risks, companies should consider these suggestions to minimize headaches with the SEC’s final rules that mandate (a) disclosures in annual report of corporate procedures to address material risks from cybersecurity threats, and (b) the filing of a Form 8-K disclosure within four business days after determining a material cybersecurity incident occurred.   

In a 3-2 vote on July 26, 2023, the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) adopted new cyber incident disclosure rules for publicly traded companies (“registrants”). Although the final rules (the “adopting release”) impose similar disclosure requirements on foreign private issuers, this article focuses on domestic issuers. The SEC intends for the new rules to enhance and standardize registrants’ cybersecurity risk management, strategy, governance, and incident response disclosures, thereby giving investors access to better information. However, there is a strong possibility that the final rules will cause companies to file cautionary disclosures, forcing investors to sift through more noise to find meaningful information.

To minimize the risk of SEC enforcement actions and litigation, registrants must develop plans and procedures for (1) updating the disclosure in their annual reports and (2) determining whether a cybersecurity incident affecting the organization is material or not.

Part I of this series discusses the compliance dates and the SEC’s new definitions pertaining to cybersecurity. Parts II and III will offer suggestions for making disclosures in annual reports and material cybersecurity incidents, respectively.Continue Reading Twelve Planning Tips to Avoid Complications with the SEC’s Cybersecurity Disclosure Rules: Part I