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Keeping brand reputation strong: All it requires is avoiding data breaches

Europe was uncovered as the region with the second largest number of data breaches. One nation saw the majority of attacks with 43 percent of incidences occurring in the U.K.

Hacks have increased through the pandemic and the war in Ukraine. — © AFP/File Noel Celis
Hacks have increased through the pandemic and the war in Ukraine. — © AFP/File Noel Celis

When consumers begin entrusting companies with confidential data, many are lulled into a false sense of security by assuming that because a brand has a good reputation this means that practices are secure and that the data entrusted with the company is safe.

This is not necessarily the case., especially when data breaches occur A look back through history shows that many big name brands have been subject to large data breaches and this demonstrated vulnerabilities with many security features.

The company BanklessTimes.com set out to explore the biggest data breaches in history and which companies and regions in the world are targeted the most.

The output showed the following significant data breaches, each one impacting upon a significant number of consumers:

  • Cam4 data breach in 2020 tops as the largest data breach – exposing 10,880 records.
  • Yahoo followed in second position, compromising 3000 records.
  • Microsoft take the title of the top spoofed brand of both 2021 and 2022.
  • Google, Yahoo, Facebook and Outlook fill the remaining top 5 brands spoofed in 2022.

Across the data set, the Asia-Pacific region has the largest number of data breaches – accounting for 31 percent of breaches in 2022. This is up from 26 percent in 2021. Within this region, one country stands out. Here, 91 percent of attacks in the Asia-Pacific region were targeted in Japan.

Outside of Asia, Europe was uncovered as the region with the second largest number of data breaches. One nation experienced the majority of attacks with 43 percent of incidences occurring in the U.K.

Elsewhere in the world, the Middle East accounted for just 4 percent of data breaches. This represents a significant decrease from 14 percent in 2021. In this region, Saudi Arabia was the target of two thirds of the attacks in the Middle East.

Unsurprisingly the general public’s trust alters after a data breach. The best way to avoid brand impact is to avoid a cybersecurity incident. Taking the U.K. population as an example, 64 percent of people said they are unlikely to trust a brand again after experiencing a data breach, whilst 23 percent felt they still could.

To build trust, more transparency is required. This is borne out by 44 percent of people believing that the firm should give a detailed explanation of what happened and how it will be prevented in the future to gain trust.

Jonathan Merry, CEO of BanklessTimes.com tells Digital Journal: “In the past year, we’ve seen threat actors move away from finance and e-commerce and instead are focussing their efforts on larger technology brands. This is due to the fact that phishing kits are getting more intelligent and the brand being spoofed can be altered by changing a simple parameter”.

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, business, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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