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Cyber attacks and data breaches faced by some of the biggest companies worldwide

In today’s world, digital alternatives have been integrated into the physical environment in various ways. Whether you prefer shopping online or you regularly interact with your friends and family on social media networks, there is no doubt your needs have completely changed compared to the pre-internet era.

From going digital in your personal life to incorporating digital avenues within businesses, it doesn’t come as a surprise that the virtual world is very much here to stay. Not only that, but with the internet being such a vital aspect of every individual, online platforms have become a necessity more than an occasional personal choice. For this reason, companies had to adapt.

Moving online for customers – but at what cost?

From a consumer perspective, businesses and companies from all industries have realized the high demand for becoming digitally visible. Research has shown that consumers have changed their behavior: 76% assume that companies will fulfill their expectations, while 65% go for the online alternative first when looking for a product. Implementing such change improves the customer experience, so it benefits the business as well.

Although going digital or selling online services is highly profitable for your business in a world controlled by technology, there are also some risks that arise in this position. Cyberattacks are more easily carried out, and cybercriminals have become more skilled in the way they operate and harder to track. Major companies, from software developers to graphic design specialists or social media network providers, can still be highly vulnerable to security and data breaches. In fact, this has happened quite often in the last few years.

Below we have compiled a list of some of the biggest companies which faced colossal attacks from cybercriminals and how it affected them.

Facebook

Everyone knows about Facebook, and it would be difficult not to. It is the biggest company of this sort worldwide, providing social networking services. At the beginning of 2021, reports on Statista show that Facebook has more than 2.7 billion users. With this kind of power and consumer reach, it doesn’t come as a surprise that it is an incredible target for hackers.

In 2018 a cyberattack was announced that is the most frightening for a Facebook user. What happened was that a hacker accessed 50 million accounts. This type of data breach allowed the hacker a look inside the users’ private information and messages. Not only that, but they could even use those accounts to their liking.

The company handled the attack by logging the attackers out of the account effective immediately and sending out notifications to users to reset their passwords.

SolarWinds

This software development company might not be as well-known as other similar ones. However, some of its clients include highly important organizations and even government agencies. So, a cyberattack on companies such as SolarWinds can have tremendous repercussions.

Going back a few months in 2020, SolarWinds was seriously hacked. You might believe this is another attack on user accounts. However, this is slightly different and, although any sort of cyberattack is dangerous, the SolarWinds one is much more worrying.

The reason why this happens is because of all the classified information the company has on various private companies and U.S.-based government agencies, such as the Department of Homeland Security. The hack was incredibly sophisticated and almost impossible to trace, however, authorities managed to put a stop to it. You can read more on Techrobot about how it provoked such a massive chain reaction.

Adobe

The software company specializing in graphic design tools, photo and video manipulation, and editing programs has also been a victim of a cyber-attack. After company representatives initially stated that 2.9 million accounts had been hacked, it was later revealed that as much as 38 million were in fact affected.

On top of that, essential codes from their applications, including the renowned editing app, Photoshop, were stolen. This is tremendously bad for a company as it allows the hacker to replicate it. On the other hand, credit card details weren’t accessed, although this remains one of the biggest threats. Companies such as Adobe that offer subscription-based access to their services need to provide impassable protection.

Yahoo

This web provider has many users worldwide. However, an interesting fact you might not have known is that Yahoo has had a couple of cyberattacks since 2013, involving the exposure of users’ account details.

From 3 billion accounts in 2013 to 500 million in 2014, these reoccurring attacks are incredibly suspicious. More than that, the company didn’t approach them reasonably – not disclosing them for a long time meant that its users were unaware of the hack.

The attack itself included the attempt of the culprit to sell the information on the dark web. Many experts have their doubts in respect to why this was the case, as it appears no credit card information was stolen.

Google China

In 2009, a significant attack hit Google at their headquarters in China. If you’re wondering if email accounts have been accessed, you are right. However, this attack has a much more specific target, that of local human rights activists.

In addition to this, companies or agencies from the U.S. and Europe were also victims of this hack. Some organizations noticed the consequences of this a few years later. Such an issue prompted tensions in the relation between China and U.S. as some thought hackers managed to access important governmental information.

JP Morgan Chase

As an investment bank, the least you want to do is let your customers know of a cyber-attack. If you found out about an event like this from your bank, you will be worried, to say the least. The cybercriminals involved accessed extremely sensitive information, such as names and addresses, from 83 million accounts. What’s more, no one detected them for as long as two months.

In terms of costs, this is an incredibly tough setback as a banking company. It is worth investing every dollar in increasing the security of your customers’ information and other delicate data. If you’re wondering what the rough number is, JP Morgan stated in 2015, they will spend 250 million dollars.

Written by Eric

37-year-old who enjoys ferret racing, binge-watching boxed sets and praying. He is exciting and entertaining, but can also be very boring and a bit grumpy.

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