The United States has seen a huge jump in data breaches and exposed records from 2015, according to a study from The Identity Theft Resource Center and CyberScout.
The study, which shows data from 2005, shows a steady increase in breaches and records exposed throughout the 12-year period.
This is not a surprise to Adopt Technologies Chief Technology Officer, Ryan Treisman. In the past five years that he has specialized in cyber security, he has seen the rise of ransomware, breaches and phishing increase drastically.
“You can basically, without much knowledge, acquire these tools fairly inexpensively.” Treisman said, “What it comes down to is there are a lot of people without other options all over the world and the returns are significant for them.”
Treisman believes that because of the amount of information out on the internet it is not a matter of if identity theft happens, but when.
He says it is not entirely possible to stop data breaches and identity theft from happening, instead his job is to try and prevent it from happening.
“We’re very connected in a community of threat researchers and like-minded businesses and government entities that focus on this.” He said, “That community provides a lot of information sharing, relevant information on emerging threats.”
With the advancements in technology companies like Adopt have to adapt to make sure their clients have the top security against the newest ways to steal information.
“People can essentially buy the tools to perpetrate these crimes, whether it’s the tools to perform the breech or ransom ware,” Treisman said, “which is a tool to encrypt a company’s data and then essentially hold it hostage until the company pays them and then they send back a de-cryptor.”
Adopt Technologies CEO Brett Helgeson says that the way businesses store data is key to help prevent paying those who use ransom ware.
“The biggest thing you can do is make sure you have really good disaster recovery and data backup programs for your I.T. systems.” Helgeson said, “Obviously making sure you are backing up data, and minimally, once a day. And that you are also keeping those backups in other locations and other systems.”
Data breaches targeting businesses are now becoming a common occurrence, stores and big companies like Target and Adidas have had major breaches leaving consumer trust low, and those whose identities were stolen rebuilding their credit, finances and lives.
Insurance companies like Zander are now offering identity theft protection due to the increased cases of data breaches.
Zander monitors social security numbers and private information on the “dark web” and alerts its customers if anything pops up.
With the amount of business and information that is put online for day to day use, sites like PayPal, Apple Pay, Venmo, and other pay sites bring an new level of risk.
“Now everything is interconnected, everything is online. Everyone uses the internet, you know, if you use the internet you are reachable by the bad guys.” Helgeson said, “It is so lucrative, there is incentive to go and do this harmful stuff. Technology enables much wider range attacks with very little effort.”