2017 Data Breaches Total Over 850, Up Nearly 30%

Print Email

The latest count from the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) reports that there have been 858 data breaches recorded this year through July 25 and that more than 16 million records have been exposed since the beginning of the year. The total is 28.3% higher than at the same time last year.

In 2016, the ITRC reported a record total of 1,093 breaches and at the current pace that total could rise to around 1,500 in 2017.

Last week’s biggest data breach occurred when a cloud-based file repository belonging to Dow Jones & Co. was misconfigured and exposed between 2.2 million and 4.0 million customer records. The exposed data includes names, addresses, account information, email addresses and the last four digits of a credit card numbers of subscribers to Dow Jones publications like The Wall Street Journal and Barron’s. A report from data security firm UpGuard details the discovery of the breach.

The business sector leads them all in the number of records compromised so far in 2017, with more than 9.2 million exposed records in 461 incidents. That represents 53.7% of the incidents and 56.1% of the exposed records so far this year.

The medical/health care sector has posted 24.8% (213) of all 2017 data breaches. The number of records exposed in these breaches totals more than 3.1 million, or about 19.2% of the 2017 total.

The educational sector has experienced 91 data breaches since the beginning of the year. The sector accounts for 10.6% of all breaches for the year and more than 1 million exposed records, about 6.6% of the year’s total.

The government/military sector has suffered 44 data breaches to date in 2017, representing about 1.3% of the total number of records exposed and 5.1% of the incidents. More than 200,000 records have been compromised in the government/military sector.

The number of banking/credit/financial sector breaches now totals 49, some 5.7% of the total incidents reported so far this year. More than 2.7 million records have been reported to be compromised in the incidents.

Since beginning to track data breaches in 2005, ITRC had counted 7,756 breaches through July 25, 2017, involving more than 904 million records.