When the news about the Equifax data breach first came out, it wasn’t yet known that there were even more victims than originally announced. While news like this is horrible and can’t be perceived as being good news, it can work as some in certain ways and provide important lessons to everyone in the cybersecurity world.
One of the three major credit reporting bureaus, Equifax, was breached last year. This affected around 143 million people with different forms of identifiable information made available to cybercriminals. 44 percent of the US’s total population could have had their information leaked, available to people who were bound to misuse it.
After the second announcement in October 2017, it was revealed that 2.5 million more people were exposed than originally announced, which brought the victim count up to 145.5 million.
But this wasn’t the end of the count.
Since then, 2.4 million victims have been found by Equifax, which had their names and partial driver’s license numbers exposed and stolen. This group got lucky, because although it is not worthless, it is limited, unlike the information that other groups had leaked. While these leaks can be detrimental, it is important to view them as reminders and learn valuable lessons from them.
Lessons from Data Breaches
The first lesson we need to go over is the obvious, that there will always be more data breaches. They are unavoidable and we will see one again.
This is unfortunate, but with so much valuable information being stored across so many different entities, data will always be at risk. It has become probable, more than just possible that data will be stolen. But, fear not, there are steps that you can take in order to prevent and prepare for another situation like this one.
Let’s start by preparing yourself on a personal level. While you should be prepared, you should realize that your data may be stolen one day, and it probably won’t be stolen from you. You should know that the big companies with your information, just like Equifax, don’t always store your data in the most secure ways. Even if you shred your bank statements and follow every other rule you’ve been told, your data could still end up in the wrong hands.
You should be prepared, more than anything, to deal with identity theft. This can be done with credit locks, freezes, and alerts. You should also have a plan of action to share with your clients and customers if your records are ever stolen. You should be on top of this situation before it blindsides you becomes an issue. Taking ownership and understanding this situation can keep your business out of harm’s way.
We wish there was a way to fully prevent data breaches, but there isn’t. MyTek is here to help you keep your personal and professional data safe. Call us today at 623-312-2440 to learn more.