Data breach: Its impact on consumers and how to address it

Sneha Katkar

Sneha Katkar, Lead Product Manager of Quick Heal

The world has gone increasingly digital in the wake of COVID-19. However, as people spend more time online and share their personal details like Email ID, phone number, passwords, bank details, etc., with websites and applications, it makes them highly vulnerable to data breaches.

Today, companies collect personal data for better client engagement. But recent data breaches clearly indicate that brands are not doing enough to protect the users’ data, which simply puts consumers at high risk. This was the major concern shown by the users when Quick Heal recently did a survey to understand their new security concerns.

Data breaches hurt both businesses as well as consumers by compromising sensitive information. For the individual who’s data has been stolen, an attacker can misuse the data in the form of phishing scams, hacking bank accounts, changing account passwords, get a bank loan on the victim’s name among others depending on the type of data being stolen. Hence, it has become important for consumers to check if their data has been leaked as part of a larger breach and take corrective measures to mitigate the impact.

Sneha Katkar, Lead Product Manager of Quick Heal said, “Owing to the increasing data breaches, we at Quick Heal have upgraded our consumer solutions by incorporating new privacy features like data breach alert. It provides instant alerts to consumers if their personal data is compromised and accordingly suggests active mitigation measures. Following a privacy-driven approach, our latest security solution also brings advanced features such as anti-tracker, webcam protection, safe banking and much more. Consumer protection is always at the core of our operations and we strongly believe that by deploying robust security products and raising awareness around the same, we can create a safe and secure digital universe for our evolving, new-age consumers.”

According to Quick Heal researchers, as brands and businesses adopt cloud-based technologies to provide personalized user experiences, they should also note that threat actors are leveraging the same tools to steal, sell and even buy stolen consumer data.

How to address the impact of a data breach?

· Immediately change your passwords for breached sites

· Use unique passwords for all online accounts

· Sign-up for two-factor authentication for your account logins

· Be cautious of any suspicious links in emails and avoid unknown sites

· Use a robust antivirus solution like Quick Heal Total Security that provides instant alerts to consumers if their personal data have been breached and compromised online and accordingly assist them in taking corrective measures.

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