Attacks/Breaches
1/6/2009
02:54 PM
Connect Directly
LinkedIn
Twitter
Google+
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Data Breaches Booming

The Identity Theft Resource Center says reported data breaches increased by 47% from 2007 to 2008.

In a down year, data breaches went up, again.

In 2008, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center, there were 656 reported data breaches, an increase of 47% from the 2007 total of 446.

The breaches were reported in the following sectors: business (240), education (131), government/military (110), health/medical (97), and financial/credit (78).

"The financial, banking, and credit industries have remained the most proactive groups in terms of data protection over all three years," the ITRC said in a statement. "The government/military category has dropped nearly 50% since 2006, moving from the highest number of breaches to the third highest."

With the business sector accounting for 36.6% of the breach total in 2008, up from 28.9% of the 2007 total and 21% of the 2006 total, the ITRC observes that the business community needs to improve its data security measures.

An analysis published on the Chronicles of Dissent blog argues that the financial sector should be singled out for poor security.

"Whereas ITRC's analysis might lead to the conclusion that the financial section is the most proactive sector because they represent less than 12% of all breaches, inspection of the raw frequency data suggests a somewhat different picture: reported breaches increased over 250% from 2007 to 2008," the blog states. "That trend indicates that security in the financial sector is not keeping pace with previous threats and new threats to data security."

One obvious place to start would be actually attempting to protect data. "[O]nly 2.4% of all breaches had encryption or other strong protection methods in use," according to the ITRC. "Only 8.5% of reported breaches had password protection."

According to the ITRC, malware attacks, hacking, and insider theft account for 29.6% of the breaches with known reported causes. Insider theft alone more than doubled from 2007 to 2008, and now accounts for 15.7% of breaches with known reported causes.

The ITRC also notes that electronic breaches (82.3%) are significantly more common than paper breaches (17.7%).

On the positive side, breaches related to human error -- data lost while on the move and accidental exposure -- declined, though they still account for 35.2% of breaches with reported causes.

Also, the government and military showed marked improvement, accounting for only 16.8% of the breaches last year, compared with 30% in 2006.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Dark Reading Must Reads - September 25, 2014
Dark Reading's new Must Reads is a compendium of our best recent coverage of identity and access management. Learn about access control in the age of HTML5, how to improve authentication, why Active Directory is dead, and more.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2012-5619
Published: 2014-09-29
The Sleuth Kit (TSK) 4.0.1 does not properly handle "." (dotfile) file system entries in FAT file systems and other file systems for which . is not a reserved name, which allows local users to hide activities it more difficult to conduct forensics activities, as demonstrated by Flame.

CVE-2012-5621
Published: 2014-09-29
lib/engine/components/opal/opal-call.cpp in ekiga before 4.0.0 allows remote attackers to cause a denial of service (crash) via an OPAL connection with a party name that contains invalid UTF-8 strings.

CVE-2012-6107
Published: 2014-09-29
Apache Axis2/C does not verify that the server hostname matches a domain name in the subject's Common Name (CN) or subjectAltName field of the X.509 certificate, which allows man-in-the-middle attackers to spoof SSL servers via an arbitrary valid certificate.

CVE-2012-6110
Published: 2014-09-29
bcron-exec in bcron before 0.10 does not close file descriptors associated with temporary files when running a cron job, which allows local users to modify job files and send spam messages by accessing an open file descriptor.

CVE-2013-1874
Published: 2014-09-29
Untrusted search path vulnerability in csi in Chicken before 4.8.2 allows local users to execute arbitrary code via a Trojan horse .csirc in the current working directory.

Best of the Web
Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
In our next Dark Reading Radio broadcast, we’ll take a close look at some of the latest research and practices in application security.