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2020 Predictions: Data Breaches

Experian predictions
Cybercriminals will leverage text-based "smishing" identity theft techniques to target consumers participating in online communities. As more Americans continue to join like-minded groups on social media to provide financial support to social causes or political candidates, cybercriminals can solicit unsuspecting consumers with fraudulent messages via SMS text to seek bank account details or other sensitive information.

Hackers will take to the skies to steal consumer data from devices connected to unsecure networks. As cities install more free public Wi-Fi systems, the more than one million drone devices operating in the U.S. today may be armed with affordable mobile hacking devices to steal sensitive data from consumers and businesses on the streets below.

Nigel Tozer, solutions director, EMEA
Cloud Companies May Be Hit By A Major Zero Day Malware Exploit: We may see the first zero-day exploit using malicious code that has a significant impact. Public cloud companies will be affected, having a major ripple effect on those who rely on them.

Jeff Shiner, CEO, 1Password
In 2015 there was a breach of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management data that exposed the fingerprints and photos of millions of people. Biometrics like fingerprint and facial recognition are a nice convenience for local authentication, but as more services collect biometric data, I expect further breaches or misuses in the future. A big advantage of passwords is that you can use a different password for each service, and change or reset them when necessary. This is something you simply can't do with your fingerprints or your face.”

Brian Foster, SVP at MobileIron
5G will result in the first public disclosure of a data breach caused by a mobile device. Extremely fast 5G connectivity will enable new capabilities for self-driving cars, remote robotic surgeries, and many other applications that require decisions to be made in single-digit milliseconds. However, it will also accelerate the amount of data lost on mobile devices. 5G will continue to dissolve traditional enterprise network perimeters and cybercriminals will take advantage of security gaps to launch all kinds of attacks, such as phishing, man-in-the-middle, device takeovers, and more.

Ameesh Divatia, co-founder and CEO of data protection company, Baffle

Jail Time for data breaches? Companies are already preparing for GDPR, CCPA and other proposed or upcoming privacy regulations. I expect a national data privacy law in the U.S. in the coming couple of years. Interestingly, the Cayman Islands Data Protection Law (which went into effect on September 30, 2019) and a bill written by U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) both carry the possibility of jail time for executives who were found to be negligent with consumer data. This will begin a debate: should the punishment for data breaches go beyond financial measures?

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