As of 2022, over 15 million global data records have been exposed, leaked, or lost. These data losses affect every country in the world, with North America, Europe, and Asia being the most affected regions. The United States alone accounts for 64% of all global data losses, with California being the state with the most data loss at 5,604,164,335 records. Other states like Florida, Georgia, and Maryland also have significant amounts of data loss.
There are many causes of data loss in the United States. Human error can include accidental deletion and lack of training. Malware is another cause, such as phishing, spoofing, and ransomware. Unexpected events can include hardware failure and software glitches. Human error is by far the biggest culprit behind data loss. Natural disasters are a non-human factor that can cause data loss as well.
The industries most affected by data breaches are healthcare and finance. In the healthcare industry, a data breach occurred in 2017 where an employee at Anthem Health Insurance forwarded 18,500 members’ records to a third-party vendor. In the finance industry, a data breach occurred in Ukraine where 100 GB of data were exfiltrated from a loan company. Public administration, manufacturing, and transportation are also affected industries.