There has been a 28 percent increase in data breaches since last year, according to a new report from the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC). The center reports that there have been 901 data breaches recorded this year through November 22, 2016, and that more than 34 million records have been exposed since the beginning of the year. And if you live in Florida, listen up: When it comes to target-rich environments for thieves to nab identities and money, Florida ranks third in the nation.
The number of breaches in 2015 totaled 781. The 901 data breaches reported so far for 2016 are nearly 27% higher than the number reported (710) for the same period last year. A total of more than 169 million records were exposed in 2015.*
Looking at data from Identity Theft Resource Center’s recent Data Breach Report, analysts with the website WalletHub compared the amount of complaints of identity theft and fraud, average losses and policies among the states and the District of Columbia. States were ranked on a 100-point scale, with 100 representing the highest vulnerability. States were evaluated across six key indicators of susceptibility to such crimes, ranging from “identity-theft complaints per capita” to “average loss amount due to fraud.”
And Florida ranks high – number 3, to be exact.
According to WalletHub’s scale, here are the top 10 areas most vulnerable to identify theft and fraud:
- District of Columbia
Here is how each sector of the economy fared in 2016 according to the latest ITRC report:
- Medical/Healthcare: 36.5% of all data breaches to date this year with 14.6 million records exposed.
- Government/Military: 6.8% of the incidents with nearly 13 million records compromised.
- Business: 44.1% of the incidents with 5.5 million exposed records.
- Banking/Credit/Financial: 4.1% of the incidents with 72,000 exposed records.
- Educational: 8.5% of all breaches for the year with more than 1 million exposed records.
Since they begin tracking data breaches in 2005, ITRC had counted 6,711 breaches through November 22, 2016, involving more than 885 million records.
*The ITRC defines a data breach as an incident in which an individual name plus a Social Security number, driver’s license number, medical record or financial record (credit/debit cards included) is potentially put at risk because of exposure. This exposure can occur either electronically or in paper format. The ITRC will also capture breaches that do not, by the nature of the incident, trigger data breach notification laws. Generally, these breaches consist of the exposure of user names, emails and passwords without involving sensitive personal identifying information. These breach incidents will be included by name but without the total number of records exposed.
The ITRC breach list is a compilation of data breaches confirmed by various media sources or notification lists from state governmental agencies. This list is updated daily, and published each Tuesday. Breaches on this list typically have exposed information which could potentially lead to identity theft, including Social Security numbers, financial account information, or medical information. ITRC follows U.S. Federal guidelines about what combination of personal information comprise a unique individual, and the exposure of which will constitute a data breach.