How is data compromised or disclosed?
Hacking is one method of obtaining data such as Social Security numbers and credit card accounts. Attackers may also use social engineering, phishing or other similar attempts to gain access. These activities can translate into very large sums of revenue for those in the organized crime world. While very sophisticated techniques are sometimes used to steal sensitive data, one of the most common threats comes from within the organization itself. According to Deloitte’s 2007 Global Security Survey, 65 percent of respondents reported repeated external breaches. Of those incidents, 18 percent stemmed from unintentional data leakage. The report also indicates that some of the surveyed data breaches went undetected for extended periods. The loss or theft of data is not limited to electronic data loss or computer hacking. Other possibilities include theft or loss of laptops, tapes and flash-drive devices or improper disposal of hard copy documents and computer equipment.