Data Breaches through Time and Today

While data, in the modern sense, means numbers and statistics stored in files online. Data throughout history has meant any meaningful collection of information. It may be a foreign concept to imagine the destruction of the Library of Alexandria as a data breach. Although in reality this event represents one of the greatest destructions of data seen in all of history. Today, it’s equivalent to nearly 600 gigabytes of lost data.

Thinking more typically, data breaches today certainly do happen online. These happen due to smaller human errors, things like misclicks or a lack of training. Yet they also happen because of large scale malware and failures of hardware or software. In practice this has been most relevant for nations like the U.S. In fact the U.S alone accounts for 64% of all data loss in the world. 

More than anything this number is accounted for by California. California alone has been the site for the loss of over five billion online records. The state being a hub for technology makes this less surprising, but it is still a staggering amount. For comparison, the United Kingdom accounts for 140 million lost or stolen records. California is multiplying that number over 30 times over.

Today, the loss of data isn’t always so significant. There is more meaningful than meaningful data out there. Although the finance industry or healthcare industry experiencing data breaches can be pretty harmful. Not all breaches of security mean the end of the world. Throughout history this was mostly the same. While there was vital information stored, most of it was expendable. This is why big destructions of data like large modern leaks and ancient destructions are so impactful. Data runs the world today, so it’s important to understand its history and its present.

The World's Largest Data Breaches

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