Data Privacy Day Marks Its 32nd Anniversary

Marking its 32nd anniversary, ‘Data Privacy Day’ is held annually on 28th January and celebrated all over Europe, Canada, and the US.

As an international day designed to raise awareness of the importance of protecting personal data, it has never been more pertinent following a year of significant data breaches.

Data Breach database site, ‘Have I Been Pwned’ shockingly confirmed that personal details of more than 770  million were recently shared online between hackers.

Data breaches happen daily in far too many places to keep count but over the past year the list of businesses who have suffered major data breaches is growing ever longer and includes top level organisations including Marriott, Facebook, Ticketmaster, FIFA and British Airways.

Other businesses who have been victims of data breaches is Barclays Bank who confirmed late last year that they have been receiving a huge number of cyber attacks everyday.

Furthermore, Uber was fined £385,000 by the Information Commissioner’s Office due to their cloud storage being hacked. The online document sharing facility has proved popular with the legal sector due to its accessibility as it allows them to access their documents from anywhere.

Whilst many believed data is a safe bet in the cloud, it has not been immune in this case. As with any technology, there is always a threat of cyber crime just around the corner because of the ever-increasing sophistication of fraudsters.

A report published last year urged businesses to protect themselves against cyber crime after findings confirmed over four in ten of businesses and two in ten charities suffered a cyber breach or attack in the past 12 months.

Gillen, who is the former head of Operations at the Europel European Cybercrime Centre said the following about cyber security “If you’re thinking about cyber security after you’ve had a breach, you’re already in trouble; you’re panicking and in a frenzy, so you’re not able to take advice in, and it’s not the time to start. Being threat-centric is very important. Identifying where you do business, what sector you’re in and what the threat to your sector is beforehand will stand you in good stead.’

Organisers of the Council of Europe, the continent’s leading human rights organisation, which includes 47 member states, protects human rights, democracy and the rule of law are seeking to raise awareness by carrying out activities showing the risks of oversharing, with governments, data protection bodies and others around the world.

As a law firm, what measures do you have in place to prevent data breaches?