What is a data breach & how to prevent one?

What is a data breach? A data breach is a security lapse where a non-authorized person can assess sensitive information without authorization.

What is a data breach? A data breach is a security lapse where a non-authorized person can assess sensitive information without authorization. Let’s dig deeper into data breach prevention measures.

A data breach is among the significant concerns bothering companies today. As more and more data is generated, proper management is where people focus their time, energy, and money. Data breach not just causes monetary losses but also leads to distrust, lowered customer loyalty, and negative brand reputation. So how do you prevent data breaches from happening?

To prevent a data breach, you need first to understand what a data breach is. Let’s dive in.

What is a data breach?

A data breach is a security lapse where a non-authorized person can assess sensitive information without authorization. Data breaches can inflict significant damage to businesses and clients alike, costing a lot and damaging reputations and lives. These security lapses are even harder to fix and require significant time to do so.

SEE: Man convicted for identity theft & fraud against US Military, veterans

Day-in, day-out, you will read about news of data breaches from different corners of the world. This is because cybercriminals have a large amount of data to access and exploit, and that means increased cybercrimes. The average cost of a data breach that falls on a company is $3.86 million. It translates to an average of $148 per stolen data, and anyone active on the internet is at risk.

What makes businesses and corporations a big target is the large availability of data that needs to be breached only once.

Reasons behind the data breach

Data breaches usually happen due to fragility in:

  • User behavior
  • Technology

Our reliance on mobile devices and computers and their connective network opens a portal for data leaks—there is more new technology on the market than ways to protect them. The innovative home products that we use at home have major flaws like the absence of proper encryption, welcoming hackers. Lack of security measures at service-provider and user ends increases your risk quotient.

How does a data breach happen?

While data breaches can happen through outside intervention, they can occur from the inside as well. Let’s take a look at how a data breach can happen.

Oversight on an employee’s part: Human error is one risk that is difficult to remove. While automation has taken our place in different industries, several fields even today need human intervention.

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Sometimes an employee can use a co-worker’s system and unintentionally read files without authorization. While the access did not mean any harm and no information was lost, the data is still classified as breached.

An inside mole: The sole purpose of this person is to access and share sensitive data to bring harm to a person or company. The person can gain trust and authorization to access data and have a hidden intent to use it for fraudulent means.

Device lost or theft: An unprotected or unlocked computer system, laptop, smartphone, or USB drive with sensitive data goes missing.

Outside attackers: Cybercriminals attack systems through their weakest link to infiltrate, access, and steal sensitive data.

How to prevent data breaches?

Now that you understand what data breaches are and their reasons, here are some ways to prevent them.

Asset inventory

When you have visual information over what software and hardware resources you have in a network, you can better understand the company’s current security position. With an asset inventory, you can divide the resources into different categories and derive threat levels for each resource.

Vulnerability and Compliance management

A VCM tool or a vulnerability assessment can help an organization find weaknesses, gaps, and places without proper security. The tool can even monitor the existing infrastructure for system compliance failure and advise best practices.

Staff education and training

You can devise staff training and employee policies for security and privacy. An organization can carry out regular security training for employees, so they know what to do in case of a threat or data breach.

Concluding note

Data breaches will exist and happen as long as there is data. Although they are hard to control and stop without a proper data protection system, you can do your part to protect the company’s data.

Meanwhile, businesses are diving deeply into identity verification by verifying customer identity to safeguard employees, customers, and the whole enterprise itself.

Identity verification is a potent measure to prevent cyber attacks like identity theft intended to misuse a person’s identity. ID verification is a part of a complete online security system that helps businesses protect, prevent, and fight online attacks.

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