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The 4 Most Common Causes of Data Breaches

Posted by Insightlink on 06/23/22

Malware is one of the most common causes of data breaches in the workplace. Some hackers create malware specifically to steal sensitive data. Once installed, this malicious software will capture targeted data and relay it back to the hacker. Ransomware attacks can be devastating, but human error is involved. Listed below are the five most common causes of data breaches.


Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts files and then demands a ransom payment in exchange for the decryption key. Some ransomware variants may also include additional functionality as an added incentive to pay the ransom. Ransomware has become one of the most common types of malware in recent years, with recent attacks crippling hospitals and public services in cities. In addition, these attacks have also caused significant damage to various organizations and their data.

Ransomware is one of the most common forms of data breach and is a type of malware that encrypts a victim's data. Once installed on a system, the malware adds an extension to the file. The encrypted file cannot be decrypted without the attacker's private key. The attacker will usually leave a note explaining how to restore encrypted data after paying the ransom. In many cases, the ransomware will also change the user's password or email address to prevent the hacker from gaining access to valuable information.

Compromised passwords

A compromised password can compromise multiple digital solutions. Users often reuse passwords across multiple accounts, exposing them to cybercriminals. Credential stuffing involves sending automated login requests to popular websites using stolen data. Once a breach occurs, hackers can use the stolen information to access the user's account.

It takes organizations 187 days to detect a data breach, and the damage will grow exponentially during this time. Understanding the most common types of security incidents will help them mitigate their risk. This article will cover the five most common causes of data breaches, along with tips to identify them. Weak passwords are one of the most common causes of data breaches. The average organization is at risk of data breaches from compromised passwords.

Unpatched systems

While patching is integral to maintaining data security, many companies fail to do it because it's boring. For example, former CISO at Levi Strauss, Steve Zalewski, said that patching is "not a technology problem, but a business-risk problem." Instead, security leaders should evaluate the vulnerabilities' risks and selectively mitigate them to achieve organizational goals. However, this approach requires a paradigm shift for most organizations. Despite this, some organizations still use traditional KPIs to gauge cyber risk.

While vulnerability reports can help identify potential security vulnerabilities, they cannot account for organizational infrastructure. For example, a company may have multiple assets behind its firewall that are not patched, or one asset might not be a priority. Without a unified view of assets, organizations often can't manage the volume of unpatched software. This leads to a problem of unpatched software. It's critical to understand your assets and how they're being used. If you can't determine each vulnerability's risk and severity, you can't patch your systems.

Human error

Among the top four malware vectors, human error is the most prevalent cause of data breaches. Human error can result from an employee making an innocent mistake or a hacker intentionally altering a malicious program to avoid detection by antivirus programs. In either case, the effect is the same: data breaches. While human error is closely related to hacker activity, insider misuse is more damaging. The former refers to an employee's negligence, while insider misuse involves the deliberate use of company systems for personal gain.

According to a recent report by Verizon, human error is one of the most frequent causes of data breaches. Companies have failed to implement appropriate security controls to prevent employees from leaking secret information to the wrong person. More than twenty percent of breaches are the result of human error. Furthermore, the report points to the lack of employee training or poor security awareness. As a result, many people fail to protect themselves and their data. This means that a security breach is inevitable.



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