As Identity Theft Grows, Companies Must Do More
One of the sad and disturbing realities of the modern world is the growing incidence of identity theft. Organizations and individuals are learning that despite earnest precautions and protections, breaches are unavoidable. A recent report from digital security firm Gemalto offers disturbing insights into how things are evolving—or perhaps, more appropriately, devolving. The report "2016: It's All About Identity Theft" examined activity during the first half of the year and found that data breaches are rising steadily, and the severity of incidents is also ticking upward. "Over the past 12 months, hackers have continued to go after both low-hanging fruit and unprotected sensitive personal data that can be used to steal identities," noted Jason Hart, vice president and chief technology officer for Gemalto. "The theft of user names and account affiliations may be irritating for consumers, but the failure of organizations to protect sensitive personal information and identities is a growing problem that will have implications for consumer confidence in the digital services and companies they entrust with their personal data. At the end of the day, the best way to protect data is to [ensure] user credentials are secured with strong authentication, and sensitive data is protected with encryption so it is useless to the thieves."