Data Breaches on the Rise

Tuesday, January 16th, 2018

Data Breaches on the Rise – UK Ranks Second Highest Worldwide for Reported Incidents

More data was lost or stolen in the first half of 2017 than during the whole of 2016 according to reports.

1.9 billion records were leaked or stolen by criminals up to June 2017, compared to 1.37 billion during all of 2016. Digital security organisation Gemalto’s Breach Level Index was published in September 2017. It revealed that 10.4 million records are swiped or exposed every day.

Worldwide there were 918 reported breaches in the first half of 2017, just over 100 more than were reported in the last six months of 2016. During the first three months of 2017 more than a million records were lost, stolen or compromised.

According to Gemalto, less than 1 per cent of the lost, stolen or compromised data utilised encryption to make the information useless to the perpetrator: an exceptionally worrying statistic.

Cybercrime was responsible for the majority of data breaches (74 per cent) and malicious insider attacks 8 per cent.

Most data breaches occurred in North America, with the UK reporting the second highest number of incidents.

In total more than 28,000 data records were compromised in the UK in the first half of 2017, an increase of 130 per cent from the second half of 2016. 50 per cent of UK data breaches were down to malicious outside attacks and 30 per cent fell to accidental loss. 65 per cent were classed as identity theft.

Industry sector wise, government ranked the largest source of security incidents with 12 in the first half of 2017, followed by technology firms with 7 and the healthcare sector with 6.

The Breach Level Index has been running since 2013. It is designed to benchmark publicly disclosed data breaches. With the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in May 2018, it is reckoned that the numbers of disclosed breaches will see an exceptionally steep rise.

These statistics, and in particular the revelation that such a huge amount of compromised data did not use encryption in order to protect it from malicious use, reiterate the point we are stressing at every given opportunity: the vital importance of installing adequate cyber security measures across the entire business.

Remember, GDPR is nearly here and with it come even more stringent laws about how data is protected. Failure to comply with these new laws could result in fines topping millions of pounds.

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At IQ in IT, cyber security is our key priority. We work with both businesses and individuals to protect data, assets and reputation. To request your cyber security review, please contact us.

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