What’s a Data Breach?

What’s a data breach? Why is it important to learn about this? What will happen to a company if it experiences a data breach? How do you avoid this? Find out more below.

What’s a Data Breach?

A data breach is when sensitive information is either stolen, lost, or misused in any way. It is one of the most common forms of cybercrime. The data might not be stolen by the attacker, but there might be unauthorized use of it.

A data breach can be intentional or unintentional. But the outcome is the same for either case. The outcome is the loss of sensitive information.

So, to help you understand better, here are some examples of data breaches:

  • Hacking. This involves accessing a system without authorization and stealing information from it 
  • Phishing. This involves sending emails to people which look genuine but are meant to trick them into giving up sensitive information Unauthorized access – there might be a case when a system has been left vulnerable and attackers use that vulnerability to access it
  • Losing sensitive information. This happens when a company has been unable to maintain an adequate level of security and sensitive information has been lost through theft, hacking, or other unauthorized access

Why Do Companies Experience Data Breaches?

There are many reasons why companies get attacked and data breaches occur. Some of them include:

  • Inadequate security measures. It is important to have a state-of-the-art security system installed on all company equipment. Because only then you can keep your data safe from hackers and other attackers who want to get unauthorized access 
  • Unpatched software. The software will have bugs and vulnerabilities which need to be fixed via updates from time to time. If your company uses outdated software which hasn’t been patched, then it will have more vulnerabilities that attackers will try to exploit 
  • Inefficient IT services. If your IT department isn’t efficient enough there could be problems with the setup of your network and other equipment which will leave your company vulnerable to cyber attacks 
  • Poor employee training. If employees aren’t well trained in security measures they can easily become victims of phishing attacks and malware infections 
  • Vulnerable business processes. If processes like payments and shipping aren’t well protected they can also become targets for cybercriminals 
  • Insufficient security policy enforcement. If employees aren’t aware of what the security policy says then they won’t take any measures that will help protect important data from being stolen or misused by attackers

How Do You Avoid This?

Of course, no one wants to experience a data breach. So, you need to put in place all the necessary measures to ensure that this doesn’t happen. Here are some ways to do that:

  • Ensure you have adequate security measures installed. 
  • Make sure that your employees are trained in security measures. And of course, following a strict security policy
  • Use anti-malware software to protect your computer. This will help keep it protected against phishing attacks, malware infections, and other cyber threats
  • Keep your data safe by using encryption. Encrypted data can only be read by the person who has the decryption key.
  • Have data backups for the most important documents. You can easily recover all your most important documents with data backups instead of starting afresh with new ones.
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