Over the past decade, billions of data records have been lost or exposed globally, with nearly two thirds of incidents occurring in the United States. These cybersecurity losses have affected every continent, with the highest number of records lost in North America, Europe, and Asia. In the United States, the states with the highest number of data losses include California, Florida, Georgia, and New York.
The major causes of data loss in the United States include human error, malware, hardware failure, and natural disasters. Industries most affected by data breaches include healthcare, finance, and government. Healthcare data breaches often occur due to employee mistakes or insider threats, while finance sector breaches are often the result of attacks by organized crime groups. Government data losses are often the result of nation-state cyber attacks or insider threats.
There has been data loss in the ancient world as well. The destruction of the Royal Library of Ashurbanipal and The Library of Alexandria are two examples of huge amounts of data loss before even the age of computers. Data loss is often a certainty. Therefore, it is important for businesses and organizations to prioritize data security and regularly update their systems to prevent data loss.