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Kroll Releases Top 10 Data Security Trends for 2011

January 5, 2011
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The 2010 calendar year brought with it an onslaught of new regulatory requirements, technological advances and increased scrutiny in data privacy and security matters that have laid the groundwork for a significant shift in how businesses handle data security in the year ahead. The Fraud Solutions division of the New York-based Kroll has released its data security forecast for 2011, highlighting the key areas where businesses will see the most noteworthy changes with regard to new data security regulations, breach vulnerabilities and protective measures.

Kroll’s 2011 Data Security Forecast includes:

1. More small scale data breaches will make headlines. Now that healthcare entities are required to report breaches affecting 500 or more individuals, expect to see an increase in the number of smaller scale breaches reported. Further, as all companies increase data security measures, system audits will bring to light breaches that may have been overlooked in the past. This is not to say that the era of the massive, Heartland or TJX-style breach is over, but they may be matched by small-breach frequency.

2. “Low-tech” theft, where data is stolen through non-electronic means, will increase. Data thieves look for the path of least resistance, focusing on areas of least attention to the organization. Because most organizations are focused on improving technology and moving from paper to electronic records, we can expect to see more low-tech data theft on the horizon – such as the bank teller convicted of identity theft for writing down customer information on sticky notes and using it to open credit accounts.

3. The continuing crisis of lost devices will dominate the data theft landscape. As consumers, we are heavily dependent upon our portable devices – Smartphones, netbooks and laptops. Organizations rely on these devices as well for anytime, anywhere connectivity. Yet, stolen or missing devices continue to be a major source of data breaches. In fact, the US Department of Health and Human Services breach list indicates that 24 percent of reported breaches were due to laptop theft -- more than any other specific cause. Expect to see an increasing number of instances and warnings of mobile vulnerabilities and scams. We’ve already seen an increase in smishing (SMS or text phishing).

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