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January 11, 2016

Top Security Hacks of the 21st Century, Part I

One of the biggest threats to companies on practically every level is data security hacks. At any moment, a thief could make their way past the security measures of your Indianapolis business and steal sensitive client or business information if you do not have adequate protection.

Though breaches happen on a daily basis, many small and mid-sized businesses that are affected go largely unreported. It is important that business owners stay aware and remain vigilant against these attacks. Staying up to date on the latest security technology and processes will help you to prevent a hack that could ruin your business or worse.

Some hacks have made history, especially in recent years. Though large strides in security have been made, hackers remain quite savvy and have pulled off a few major security breaches in recent times. Here are some of the top security hacks of the 21st century.

2010 Stuxnet Hack

Cyber terrorism has become a huge threat in recent years, and this is just one example of how a breach in cyber security is potentially capable of crippling a nation. This hack began in 2007, and was originally planned to be an attack on Iran’s nuclear program. Though the immediate effects on the United States were minimal, it was the first time in history that a hack on interior infrastructure moved from a simple possibility to a scary reality.

2006 Department of Veterans Affairs Hack

The human element is often the weak link in security, which was shown once again in the 2006 Department of Veterans Affairs hack. A simple laptop, which belonged to an analyst, was stolen from the employee’s home. The VA database was on this device and also on an external hard drive. The database was unencrypted and contained the extremely sensitive personal information of 26.5 million veterans. Thankfully, the items that had been stolen were returned to authorities. It was estimated that the loss would have been in the ballpark of $500 million.

2011 PlayStation Network Hack

In 2011, Sony PlayStation Network experienced one of the worst data breaches of the online gaming community ever. 12 million of the 77 million accounts that were affected had unencrypted credit card information. The hackers gained valuable information that included purchase history, home addresses, login names and passwords as well as full names and email accounts. This made the entire IT security industry stop and realize: If it could happen at Sony, it could happen anywhere. Perhaps the scariest part of this major security breach is that Sony has yet to find the culprit behind the operation.

Cyber security is not the only system that small and mid-sized businesses should be worried about. Criminals often steal sensitive information from old documents as well. To prevent either scenario from occurring, it is very important to implement an effective document and hard drive destruction process. For more information, visit our services page or contact a representative at Pro Shred Indianapolis today.

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