Data Breach – Understanding the severity of it

A data breach is a security gap in which information or data is accessed or stolen without authorization. It is a breach of trust between the owner of the data and the party that accesses it without consent. To put it in simpler terms it a nonconsensual usage of someone’s information, which results in the violation of the concerned person’s right to privacy.

For example, you register for a paid newsletter online by submitting your phone number, address, and credit card details. If your information is leaked to a third party without your authorization, it a case of a breach of data.

How serious is the issue

Data breach is a burning issue that the Internet companies, corporations, government, and individuals are grappling with currently. There are a multitude of events where individual, government, and public data have been compromised leading to serious cases of privacy encroachment and financial loss. According to IBM and the Ponemon Institute’s annual study “Cost of a Data Breach,” the total cost of data breach stands at USD 3.92 million in 2019.

Most of the data breach incidents are consequences of cyberattacks directed towards large corporations and government institutes that deal handles sensitive and personal data such as phone number, address, bank details, credit card information, property details, etc.

However, it is not limited to only corporations and government institutions. Cyberattackers have targeted individuals and small businesses alike to breach data security protocols.

How do data breaches occur

Cyberattackers mostly prey upon weak or outdated cybersecurity systems and lenient data security protocols. Nonencrypted data is mostly the culprit of data breach incidences.

Attackers pry on outdated software, weak passwords, drive-by downloads, security flaw of an existing antivirus, or through targeted malware attacks. In all these cases they break into the system and hack nonencrypted data of users.

How to stay ahead of data breaches

If cyber attackers are smart we need to be smarter. Attempts of a data breach can be avoided if a few basic hygiene and security measures are followed.

At an organizational level, it is important to always encrypt data. There should be a strict policy on portable storage devices, such as USB sticks, pen drives, mobile phones, and digital media. Having an endpoint security solution where you can manage individual devices of your employees should take care of most of the things.

At a personal level, always insist on having a strong password, which becomes difficult for hackers to break into. Do not have passwords that are just your name or date of birth. Include a mix of special characters, numerals, and alphabets and make sure you change your password timely.

Be very careful of websites that you visit and content that you download. Most attackers rely on malware that they install on your device to hack into your data. An intelligent cybersecurity solution like Quick Heal Total Security can protect you from corrupt websites.

Avoid opening any links or attachments in an email from an unfamiliar source.

Never reveal your personal information online on shared platforms and social media sites.

With a little precaution and with a smart cybersecurity solution like Quick Heal Total Security we can keep data breaches at bay.

Akuti Ojah

Akuti Ojah

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