How Do Data Breaches Happen?

A data breach is a severe problem nowadays due to the proliferation of viruses and various types of computer frauds that are continually appearing.

These problems arise because some companies do not control what their users do on the Internet and how they use companies’ devices.

Employees’ Hazardous Behavior Affects Safety

Cisco carried out a study that revealed that employees have an impressive array of behaviors that put information and business resources at risk, despite having specific procedures established by companies.

67.3% of the incidents related to data leakage reported were due to errors or incompetence of workers. Even though workers understand the risks and consequences of safety, they do not take as many measures as they should.

Some of the most common examples of these behaviors that cause data leakage are:

Use of Unauthorized Applications

The use of unauthorized applications in companies can constitute a risk for both confidential and personal information. Personal email is the most commonly used unauthorized application, followed by online banking, online account payment, online shopping, and instant messaging.

These applications involve a high risk of a data breach because they are often not supervised and do not comply with the company’s security regulations.

Misuse of Company Devices

On many occasions, employees violate the company’s security policies to get around the rules. Some examples include: altering security settings and sharing work devices and confidential information with people outside the company.

Some override security settings when downloading music, buying online, paying bills and, in some cases, accessing gambling websites.

Some employees admitted sharing confidential information with friends, family or even strangers, and almost half of them share company devices with people outside the company.

These behaviors make it easier for people outside of the organization to access the company’s intellectual property, exposing the organization to severe threats to security and profitability.

Unauthorized Access Through The Network

Sometimes employees access unauthorized areas of the network. Transferring files from a company’s device to a personal computer that is not protected, using personal communication means that are not as secure as corporate media, and not using privacy protection on a portable computer when working in a public place, facilitate the theft of information.

Employees also do not adequately protect storage devices and portable equipment, which can be lost or stolen.

What Would Happen If A Hacker Had Access To Your Customers’ Database?

Without a doubt, it would be an economic disaster for your company, whatever its size, and it would seriously affect your commercial strategy.

Although it is always important to take extreme precautions to avoid any type of incident, these events have a significant aspect due to the reputational impact.

If you want to know more details about how to deal with an incident of this type, check out our blog post “What to Do After a Security Breach“. Remember that data theft can have important consequences on your customers and on the image of the organization. Protect your information!

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