Data Protection Commissioner reveals 2016 data security breach statistics

Helen Dixon, the Irish Data Protection Commissioner, reveals that 2,224 data security breaches have been reported in 2016. Compared to the year before, when the number totalled 2,317, the number of reported incidents is only a bit lower.

In 2015, the total number of complaints over data privacy was 932. In 2016, the number of complaints increased to 1,479. The ODPC has dealt with queries over data privacy by:

– Email (15,335)

– Telephone (16.744)

– Post (1,150)

The full spectrum of statistics is available in the annual report for 2016.

Dixon stated that in the next 12 months, Ireland will be getting ready for the onset of the General Data Protection Regulation (or GDPR for short). When the new rules come into full effect in 2018, she is expecting to see an increased number of data security breaches reported by businesses.

According to her, it is hard to assess the real levels of non-compliance. One of the most noteworthy things she mentioned is that breaches are an inevitable consequence of the handling of data.

She went on to say that businesses will need to focus on front-line training, since data security measures are only as good as the weakest link. One example that she specified is when an employee working at a prominent coffee chain posted pictures of CV’s on Snapchat, which was a huge breach of data privacy.

The ODPC saw a substantial increase in available resources, which led them to hire an additional 70 employees. They now have a new office space in the city centre.