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Data Breach is the release of secure information into an untrusted environment, whether that be through hackers or even an employee mistake. This can be anything from the leaking of confidential hospital records or credit card numbers to internal company emails.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to preventing data breaches, as attackers constantly find ways to compromise security systems. Attackers can hack into a corporate network to steal sensitive information, break into office buildings to steal paper documents and physical hard drives, or use skimming devices on physical credit and debit card readers to collect individual payment information.

Additionally, attackers are now targeting more sophisticated targets such as home security systems and smart thermostats that have the capability to be controlled via the internet. Criminals can leverage the data stored on these devices to identify behavioural patterns that can be used to identify occupants of homes, such as when they are likely at work or on vacation.

When a breach does occur, the impact is wide-ranging for both businesses and consumers. The business suffers the financial cost of repairing damaged systems and reputation, while customers are affected when their personal information is leaked or sold on the black market.

As such, the key to limiting damage is rapid remediation. This includes isolating affected systems, disabling breached accounts and systems, restoring from backups and conducting a thorough investigation to determine the root cause. It also means contacting regulators and providing support to victims, such as identity theft monitoring and protection services.