2011 Was the Year of the ‘Hacktivist

NEW YORK, March 22, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — The “Verizon 2012 Data Breach Investigations Report” reveals the dramatic rise of “hacktivism” — cyberhacking to advance political and social objectives.

In 2011, 58 percent of data stolen was attributed to hacktivism, according to the annual report released today from Verizon. The new trend contrasts sharply with the data-breach pattern of past several years, during which the majority of attacks were carried out by cybercriminals, whose primary motivation was financial gain.

Seventy-nine percent of attacks represented in the report were opportunistic. Of all attacks, 96 percent were not highly difficult, meaning they did not require advanced skills or extensive resources. Additionally, 97 percent of the attacks were avoidable, without the need for organizations to resort to difficult or expensive countermeasures. The report also contains recommendations that large and small organizations can implement to protect themselves.

Now in its fifth year of publication, the report spans 855 data breaches across 174 million stolen records – the second-highest data loss that the Verizon RISK (Research Investigations Solutions Knowledge) team has seen since it began collecting data in 2004. Verizon was joined by five partners that contributed data to this year’s report: the United States Secret Service, the Dutch National High Tech Crime Unit, the Australian Federal Police, the Irish Reporting & Information Security Service and the Police Central e-Crime Unit of the London Metropolitan Police.

For more information, visit  verizonbusiness.com/products/security.

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