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Breaches and Leaks Soared 424% in 2018

March 08, 2019 / Phil Muncaster

Nearly 15 billion identity records circulated in underground communities in 2018, a 71% increase over the year as hackers targeted smaller organizations more widely, according to a new report from 4iQ. The identity intelligence company scanned the surface, social, deep and dark web for identity related breaches to compile its latest annual report, The Changing Landscape of Identities in the Wild: The Long Tail of Small Breaches. It claimed that, once normalized and cleansed, the stolen identity data numbered 3.6 billion records — a much lower figure than the headline raw data numbers, but still representing a 20% increase on 2017. The firm also confirmed 12,449 breaches and leaks last year, a 424% increase on 2017, although the average size of the breach/leak was 4.7 times smaller than 2017, at nearly 217,000 records. That’s due in part to hackers targeting larger numbers of small businesses, according to the vendor. Small businesses and suppliers for large companies presen...