Data leaks: 2.3 billion files exposed in one year

Data leaks. According to a study conducted by Digital Shadows, the number of files exposed on the Web, including personal information, has increased by 50% compared to last year.

As you can see on, the number of data leaks seems to have increased. Digital Shadows, a company specialising in cybersecurity, intends to confirm this with a study. According to the company, 2.3 billion sensitive files were accessible on the Web.

This includes bank information, credit card details, medical data, etc. They have often been made available along with many other public data. This is due to poor security or configuration of online or cloud silos. This year the Amazon S3 buckets have been the talk of the town. Rsync servers, SMB files too. The latter account for no less than 46% of the updated files.

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Data leaks : France the European donkey cap

Compared to last year, this is equivalent to an increase of 750 million files. Digital Shadows counted 1.5 billion exposed in 2018. The 50 per cent increase was due in part to cloud migration of medical imaging photos. No less than 4.7 million medical records were publicly posted online. Most of them (4.4 million) are actually scans. Problem, some of these images were associated with personal patient information.

On the other hand, no less than 17 million files have been affected by a Ransomware attack. One of them, NamPoHyu, infected no less than two million data.

Unsurprisingly, the country most affected by these data leaks is none other than the United States. Companies have left no less than 326 million pieces of information “out in the open”.France comes second in this ranking with 151 million files, Japan third with 77 million.

Numerous areas for improvement

In Europe, the region of the world most affected by data leaks, Luxembourg and the Netherlands have been able to reduce exposures by strengthening the national legal arsenal through the European regulation. Which France hasn’t really done.

In addition, AWS has changed the configuration of Amazon S3. Digital Shadows has still spotted more than 1850 open buckets this year.

In all likelihood, the cause of these data leaks is a misconfiguration. Researchers note that companies protect their systems more than their customers. As a result, Digital Shadows offers several recommendations in its report to avoid these problems.

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