What is personal data? As you might expect, personal data is any information that helps to identify you. Demographic details like name, location, gender etc. are low-level. This information alone does not necessarily give away your identity as there may be many users that share your name, age or date of birth. High-level personal details such as national insurance number, driver’s license number and passport number can tell a person exactly who you are and are strong indicators for identity confirmation. In Europe, GDPR laws state the requirements for data privacy and security. Learn more about GDPR here.
Why is personal data protection important?
It is important because it is uniquely yours; it is used to locate you, contact you or identify you. More personal information is out there than ever before because the internet requires information to identify us as a customer. It is also in the interest of companies to offer to store payment information, to make it easier for us to purchase products easier.
Social media has accelerated the rate of online purchases to a higher level than ever. Now, thanks to the pandemic, this is higher than ever before. Unfortunately, that means that there are large stores of highly sensitive personal information out there in the world. Naturally, there will be malicious agents looks to take advantage. This makes us more vulnerable than ever to cybercrime, with online theft rising at an alarming rate. Online shopping has increased by almost 30% due to the pandemic. Many experts believe the current financial climate paired with the increase in online purchases could be stewarding in a golden age of cybercrime.
Did you know?
According to the Crime Survey For England and Wales, there were an estimated 3.8 million incidents of fraud in the year ending March 2019. In a staggering 63% of cases, there was no contact between the victim and offender; fraudsters preyed on victims over the phone or online. In a scarier statistic, over 76% of these offences caused the victim to incur a financial loss.
What happens if there is a data breach?
Data breaches can be disastrous for companies. Recently, The ICO (Information Commissioners Office) fined British Airways 20 million pounds for a violation of 400, 000 customers personal data. Shockingly, for publicly traded companies, data breaches can also significantly impact a companies’ share price. Less directly, a data breach can wreak havoc on a companies reputation, especially if it is a financial institution that is supposed to be protecting the interests of customers or clients. That isn’t only for giant corporations, word of a data breach can affect the customer trust for SMEs too
How penetration testing prevents data breaches
Penetration testing (or pen testing) gives business owners a real-life insight into the risks to their business. It tells your IT security team, and your company at large, what risks your business faces and how they are likely to manifest themselves if a hacker were to try and gain access to your network. A pen test shows you exacts how your defences will work to prevent data breaches due to web app vulnerabilities and social engineering.
OmniCyber Security is a world-renowned company that operates with a unique combination of passion and attention to detail. We protect and ensure your business’ future. We have experience supporting businesses of every size and have spent years providing best-in-class CREST certified pen testing and PCI DSS.
We help our customers identify risks through expert knowledge and world-leading penetration testing and cybersecurity operation. We create air-tight business continuity plans for our clients with clear and practical steps that will keep your business operating and making a profit, even in the light of seemingly unforeseeable or uncontrollable circumstances.