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15 Most Outrageous Data Loss Incidents
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15 Most Outrageous Data Loss Incidents


Top 15 more outrageous data loss incidents since the inception of the Internet. It is becoming more crucial to protect and backup your data when even the most trusted banks, credit card companies and …

Top 15 more outrageous data loss incidents since the inception of the Internet. It is becoming more crucial to protect and backup your data when even the most trusted banks, credit card companies and government agencies betray your trust.

Published in Technology
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  • lots of great stories here, backup your data or else
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  • 1. 15 Most Outrageous Data Loss Incidents of all Time
  • 2. 15. British Home Office loses data on all English & Wales prisoners
    Data on 84,000 prisonerswas lost
    British Home Officer ‘misplaced’ a thumb drive
    Employee thought it was a good idea to download all England & Wales prisoners’ data from secure servers to a thumb drive!
    This was ‘okayed’ as long as this person didn’t lose it…
  • 3. 14. Ma.gnolia Meltdown
    Ma.gnolia went down in January 2009
    Data was lost forever in the cloud
    Database failed
    No backup
    Noeffectiverecovery solution
    Users turned to Delicious
    Data corruption and loss can be redeemed but faith in cloud servicesis irreparable
  • 4. 13. Daily Mail loses employee data
    Daily Mail was a company that pointed out fallacies of government when it lost data, slipped up, or jeopardized security.
    Daily Mail met some karma in 2008 when one of their laptops was stolen
    Contained personal information on thousands of the organization’s staff – including bank account numbers
  • 5. 12. Department of Veteran Affairs Stolen Laptop
    Employee took a laptop home and it ‘mysteriously’ disappeared
    Data & info on 27 million veterans and GI’s were on laptop
    2 months later and 4 miles away, the laptop was being sold
    Hard drive appeared to not have been touched
    Sheer luck that no one accessed the data
  • 6. 11. British Royal Navy data stolen
    Lost information on everyone who applied to join the armed forces for past ten years
    Royal Navy Officer left laptop in his car – it was soon stolen
    Lesson learned: lock your car door (or better yet, don’t leave an unattended laptop in your car!)
  • 7. 10. Microsoft Loses Sidekick user data
    Microsoft acquired T-Mobile’s Sidekick phone
    Every user’s data was lost promptly after the acquisition
    Loss was result of server failure at either Microsoft or Danger, former owner of Sidekick
    Data was eventually recovered for most users
  • 8. 9. Virginia loses prescription drug records
    Man hacked into Virginia State Government’s Prescription Monitoring Program
    Downloaded 8.3 million health records
    He then issued random statement
    “I don’t know what all this [expletive] is worth or who would pay for it, but I’m bettin’ someone will.”
    The Government did pay, unclear if hacker was ever identified
  • 9. 8. Health Net Insurance Loses Data on 1.5 Million Customers
    Portable hard drive was lost
    1.5 million patients’ data was lost
    Attorney General promised an investigation
    Lesson learned: that much information should NOT be portable
  • 10. 7. VeriSign: Not as secure as you thought
    VeriSign is a security confirmation company for online websites to reassure customers that their data is safe when making a purchase
    Data loss occurred when laptop was lost
    Contained private information on all Verisign employees including SSN’s, telephone numbers, salaries, etc.
  • 11. 6. Courier Service Loses Data on 25 Million People
    Government department copied info on 25 million people onto a pair of CDs sent them by courier from HM Revenue and Customs to the National Audit Office
    Discs never showed up
    Even worse, this isn’t the first time this has happened to this government agency!
  • 12. 5. Los Alamos Computers Go Missing
    The Los Alamos nuclear weapons facility deals with highly sensitive data
    Did not take special precautions to protect it
    Laptops go missing periodically
    As of 2008, 80 laptops had gone missing
    Lesson learned: Tighten security if this is a recurring problem!
  • 13. 4. Bank of America loses data on 1.2 million government employees
    BoA lost a backup tape containing personal data from 1.2 million government employees
    If BoA is responsible for securing billions of dollars, how can they lose a backup tape?
    One employee whose data was compromised: Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT)
  • 14. 3. CardSystems Gets Hacked
    CardSystem manages credit and debit cards
    Hackers hacked into CardSystems, compromising 40 million people’s information
    Security breach occurred at a third-party processor of payment card transactions
    100,000 Visa accounts and 30,000 other card brand accounts were hacked
    Culprit: CardSystems failed to secure their network although certified in 2004
  • 15. 2. National Archive and Records Loses 76 million social security numbers
    NARA, which keeps records for U.S. military, sent a broken hard drive for repair
    They failed to erase the information of 76 million military individuals as well as Secret Service and White House operations procedures
    Single largest release of personal information by the government ever
    No breach of data occurred but incident itself is significant
  • 16. 1. Heartland Payment System Hacking Exposes 130 million
    Albert Gonzalez and his cronies hacked Heartland Payment Systems, 6th largest credit card processor in the country
    Through an SQL injection, they managed to plant scripts that siphoned credit card and personal data of 130 million users
    Largest data breach of 2009, and possibly of all time
  • 17. Lessons Learned
    Companies are not taking data security seriously
    Double think where you store data
    Set data security policies within your organization
    Be careful where you send your data and how it is handled
    Never leave sensitive data out in the open
  • 18. Protect Your Online Data
    If banks, government agencies, and credit card companies can’t secure your data, who can you trust with your data?
    Only a redundant backup will ensure your data will never be lost
    Protect your data with a Backupify free or premium social media backup account