Data Breaches up 35%

Data breaches tracked by the Identity Theft Resource Center in 2017 accounted for 698 as of May 30. This is a 35.3% increase over the record pace of 2016 when the number of data breaches tracked was 516 in 2016’s 1st 5 months.

Data Breaches Are on the Rise

According to Karen A. Barney, the ITRC’s director of research and publications, nearly 80 (11.3%) of 2017’s breaches have damaged payment card records. The card records damaged make up 364.611 (3.6%) of the total.

This year’s major known affecting payment cards involve restaurant chains. Also, data breaches have occurred at car washes nationwide.

Fraudsters are attacking companies and organizations with more and more advanced and sophisticated phishing emails, aiming to make the recipient open them. As soon as the recipient opens the email, malware is placed on the recipient’s computer system.

Other cases include “spear-phishing” attacks, when emails seem to be sent to a lower-level employee from a higher-up executive in the same company, asking the employee for sensitive information or to arrange a wire transfer to a fraudulent recipient.

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Recent Data Breaches

For the 2nd time in less than 3 years, discount-store chain Kmart is fighting a malware-based security breach of its store credit card processing systems. The malware has damaged an undisclosed number of payment cards. Current anti-virus systems and application controls were unable to detect the malicious code that infected Kmart store payment data systems.

According to cyber security software provider Symantec and eCommerce platform BigCommerce, the cost of a data breach to an e-commerce retailer is now $172 per record.

It’s important to note that hackers are using 3 types of attacks on e-commerce retailers:

  • A denial of service attack (often called a DDoS attack), which is the most common attack. Based on BigCommerce and Symantec data, 45% of the attacks on e-commerce companies are DDoS attacks.

  • Attacks on a point-of-sale solution (32%).

  • A web app attack (13%).

The cost to e-commerce retailers continues to grow. The same is also true of the likelihood of attacks. The cost of a hack has increased 29% since 2013. Today, the average cost of a single attack accounts for $4 million.