Report Finds 2019 on Track to Be Another “Worst Year on Record” for Data Breach Activity

Data Breach

Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

On August 15, 2019, Risk Based Security (RBS) released its 2019 MidYear QuickView Data Breach Report that showed 2019 was on track to be another “worst year on record” for data breach activity, with over 3,800 incidents reported in the first six months of the year. Compared to mid-year of 2018, the number of reported data breaches rose by 54 percent and the number of exposed records rose by 52 percent.

“Looking over the first six months of 2019, it is hard to be optimistic on the outlook for the year. The number of breaches is up and the number of records exposed remains stubbornly high. Despite best efforts and awareness among business leaders and defenders, data breaches continue to take place at an alarming rate,” RBS Executive Vice President Inga Goddijn stated in a story about the report.

Specifically, the report from RBS – a global leader in vulnerability intelligence, breach data, and risk ratings – found that 3,813 data breach incidences were reported through June 30, 2019, exposing over 4.1 billion records. Eight data breaches reported within Quarter 1 and Quarter 2 of 2019 accounted for 3.2 billion records exposed, with three of these being among the largest breaches of all time.

“The vast majority of incidents are attributable to malicious actors outside an organization,” Goddijn stated in the story about the report. “Unauthorized access of systems or services, skimmers, and exposure of sensitive data on the Internet have been the top three breach types since January of 2018. However, insider actions, both malicious and accidental, have driven the number of records exposed.”

The MidYear Data Breach QuickView Report tracks publicly disclosed breaches and records exposed within 2019 so far. Key findings include that the Business sector accounted for 67 percent of reported breaches, which continues the trend observed in the Quarter 1 2019 report. From these breaches, further analysis reveals that the Business sector was responsible for 84.6 percent of records exposed.

In July of 2019, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), and 48 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico announced a settlement with credit reporting agency (CRA) Equifax that would provide up to $700 million in monetary relief and penalties for a 2017 data breach that impacted approximately 147 million consumers, according to a CFPB press release.

Data breach incidents have caused employers that conduct background checks to choose screening firms with certifications such as SOC 2® reports and accreditation with the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS). For international screening, U.S. screening firms must comply with the EU-U.S. and Swiss-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a leading global background check provider – is accredited by the NAPBS, undergoes annual SOC 2® audits, participates in the EU-U.S. and Swiss-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework, and has fully compliant GDPR technology. To learn more about background screening services that protect against data breach incidents, please visit www.esrcheck.com.

NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.

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