2007 has seen a year with a large amount of data losses from reputable companies. One of the largest losses was with the TJX Companies. TJX Companies, a retail giant, was among those reporting major losses at 46.5 million records in a breach that took nearly 18 months to discover and secure. However, Mastercard and Visa indicated that this breach reached more than 94 million before it was over.
While the exact number of records lost is unknown, Attrition.org reported that more than 163 million records were reported lost or stolen by third parties. Another organization that tracks breaches, Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC), reported more than 127 million records lost. The records lost or stolen included such data as credit card numbers, user names, passwords, email addresses, social security numbers, dates of birth, as well as additional contact information. Virtually an entire person’s life was available for the taking. Many anaylsts are calling 2007 “the year of security breaches”.