What Is A Data Breach? Everything You Need To Know

In this article, we will answer the questions, What is a data breach? And how can you handle one?

What Is A Data Breach? 

A data breach is a security incident. It exposes private and sensitive information.

Moreover, it can include losing your Identification Number or bank account. Also, it can be your health data, email address, or even passwords.

Additionally, data breaches can be intentional. For example, a hacker gained access to your database. Then, he steals your data. And sells them to the black market.

However, it can also be accidental. For instance, your employee accidentally shared your information. Or posted on her social media account.

The common targets for breaches are the following:

  • hospitals
  • companies
  • government offices
  • universities
  • military

How does it happen?

There are many ways breaches happen. Also, hackers are innovative in stealing data.

In a 2019 report, here are the nine common patterns of hackers.

  1. Insider misuse. Employees know the company’s information. And sometimes, they steal or sell these to others.
  2. Physical theft. A stolen laptop or laptop left in a lobby. They can be the source of data breaches. Also, it can be stolen documents. Whether intentional or accidental.
  3. Crimeware. It can include ransomware, SQL injection, or phishing attempts.
  4. Denial of service. Hackers use this type of attack. Where they target a company’s network and systems. They often flood the network traffic. Then, it stops a service.
  5. Card skimming. Criminals can put a skimming device. They commonly put these devices in gas terminals or ATMs. It can steal your financial information. 
  6. Web application attacks. Hackers can steal your names or addresses when you fill up an online form. So, be extra careful in signing up.
  7. Cyber spying. These hackers send emails to spy on the government. They can ruin a system. And also steal information.
  8. Point-of-sale attacks. Hackers can also setup remote attacks in terminals and controllers. Like what happened to Wendy’s.
  9. Security accidents. It can be anything from losing sensitive data.

How can you protect your data?

We all agree that we want our data to be safe. But, inevitably, we have shared these data with a lot of places. It can be your bank, restaurant, or doctor’s office.

So, you can follow these steps. It will be your personal defense.

  1. Shred private documents.
  2. Give your Social Security number only when required.
  3. Use safe websites.
  4. Create strong passwords. With uppercase and lowercase letters and special characters.
  5. Monitor your online transactions.
  6. Keep updated applications and software.

How can you recover your data?

If you are affected by a data breach, follow these:

  • Know the lost data. Companies usually inform their clients about a breach. So, if you are notified, accept monitoring services.
  • Let your bank know. Credit card and bank issuers can help you, too. They can assist you in changing your account numbers. Or they can set up fraud alerts.
  • Change your passwords. If you reused the passwords from the breached account, change them ASAP. And avoid using the same passwords. We suggest using a password manager.
  • Monitor your accounts. Be updated for unusual activities. Like withdrawals or creating a new credit line.
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