"Big Data" is a recent marketing buzzword used to usher in the age of businesses utilising the vasts amount of data which they process and store for increasing efficiently and profit. The problem is much of this "Big Data" is our personal data, and there are cyber criminals also seeking to profit from it. So here we are in the era of "Big Data Hacks", which sums up 2016 quite well.
I have compiled a list of media headlines of data breaches in 2016 below, the volumes involved with these data theft hacks are truly mind–boggling. Yahoo on their own had 1.5 billion personal records stolen in two cyber attacks. It isn't necessary that stealing digital text data in such volumes is difficult, but have to wonder about what level of IT security was in place to protect such large volumes of personal data in the first place.
DDoS attacks continued to grow in strength in 2016, thanks to the explosion of the Internet of Things, with hackers creating huge DDoS botnets from insecure and rushed IoT devices, which frankly have no business of being sold and placed online with default passwords and basic software vulnerabilities.
2016 was also the year Ransomware made a huge comeback. The UK public sector seems particularly vulnerable to ransomware infections, with cyber criminals making millions by evolving various strains of ransomware and catching victims out with the age old infection techniques of phishing emails, malware infected websites and trojan software.
In 2017 we can expect to see more Big Data hacks and huge IoT fuelled DDoS attacks. Ransomware isn't going to go away either, however I am most concerned we'll see our first IoT attack which results in physical world damage and human harm in 2017.
Personal Data Theft and Data Breaches in 2016
- Yahoo Hack: 1 Billion User AccountsCompromised by biggest Data Breach in History
- KFC's Colonel Club Hacked, 1.2 Million advised to Change Passwords
- DailyMotion breached, 85 Million Accounts Stolen
- LinkedIn’s Lynda.com breached, 55,000 user password reset, 9.5 Million Users Warned
- Star Wars card firm Topps hit by 'unforgiveable' Hack
- Three Data Breach Cyber Hack: Six Million Customers Data at Risk
- National Lottery Hack: 26,500 Players' Online Accounts Accessed
- Capgemini Leaks 780,000 Michael Page Job Candidate CVs
- Hackers steal 43 million credentials from Weebly
- Yahoo Hit in Worst Hack Ever, Over 500 Million Accounts Stolen
- Dropbox Hack 'affected 68 Million users'
- 200 Million Yahoo user credentials for sale on Dark Web
- Tesco Bank Hack: £2.5m refunded to 20,000 Customers
- Epic Games Forums Hacked with SQL Injection, over 800,000 User Credentials Stolen
- Telegram API flaw leaks 15 Million Iranian users' Data
- Hackers exploit vBulletin SQL Flaws to access 27M accounts on 11 Websites
- 1.6m ‘Clash of Kings’ forum accounts Stolen
- Over 750,000 Warframe Accounts Compromised
- O2 Customers' details sold on the Dark Web
- 'Significant' number of TeamViewer accounts Hacked
- 32 Million Twitter Logins found up for Sale
- Welsh Police fined £150,000 by ICO after revealing Sex Offender Identities in Error
- 117 million LinkedIn Email Credentials found for Sale on the Dark Web
- Email Error Leaks Hundreds of Northern Ireland Prison Officer Details
- World-Check Terrorism Database Exposed Online
- Chelsea & Westminster Trust fined £180K after email reveals over 700 HIV Patients
- ICO Fines Blackpool NHS Trust £185,000 for leaking staff data via Excel Error
- Kent Police fined £80k for serious Domestic Abuse Data Breach
- 272 Million email Account Credentials found on the Dark Web
- MySpace and Tumblr hit by 'Mega Breach'
- National Childbirth Trust suffers major Data Breach
- Personal Details of 50 million Turkish Citizens Leaked Online
- Huge data breach leaves details of 55 million Filipino voters exposed
- 93.4 million Mexican voters exposed in massive Database
- Leak BeautifulPeople.com hack exposes data of 1.1 million users
- Cyber Criminals 'Hacked Law Firms'