Mon, Apr 26th 2010 8:35pm
The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse has put up a pretty interesting chronology of data breaches (via Guardianista) detailing leaks in the US since 2005 that resulted in the loss of people's personal info. They've totaled up the figure over the past five and a bit years, and it's a staggering 358.4 million records lost. Keep in mind that 358.4 million is just a minimum, since there are plenty of leaks that have lost an unknown number of records (like the one from a closed-down Hollywood Video store in Nevada, where customer records were thrown in a dumpster then scattered by the wind). Still, you may be thinking that you don't hear about record-breaking data breaches much these days, but that's not because they've stopped -- it's just that they happen so often, they're really not all that newsworthy any more. A lot of lip service gets paid to clamping down on fraud, but it really doesn't seem like much goes on to stop data leaks, since the penalties for the leaks are toothless and are cheaper than any real prevention.
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