FTC Chair Nominee and New Federal Reserve Chairman Each Mention Data Breaches as a Critical Concern

As the FTC considers and confirms nominees to fill vacant commission seats, those interviewed speak to the still growing threat of data breaches and say this is a top priority for the government agency. Meanwhile, the House Financial Services Committee asks new Fed Chairman Jerome Powell what approach he will take to secure data, following more than 50 data breaches involving the Federal Reserve in the last seven years.

In a Senate confirmation hearing with Joseph Simmons, one of three people recently nominated to chair the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the anti-trust lawyer spoke to the threat of data breaches that has continued to increase. “They’re becoming much more significant, much more frequent, and I think that’s a real serious concern for us and I think we need to pay much more attention to it,” he said.

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Uber Sat on Data Breach Affecting 57 Million Users for Over 1 Year

Uber, one of the latest companies to suffer a data breach, is suffering backlash not just for the 57 million user accounts compromised following the breach, but the company’s failure to disclose the breach until more than one year after it occurred. The company is now facing scrutiny from Congress and potential legal repercussions.

The data breach occurred in October, 2016 when two hackers stole data from a third party server. The data included names, phone numbers and email addresses of 57 million riders and drivers, where driver’s license information was compromised for many Uber drivers as well.

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The Holiday Season is Also Fraud Season

It’s no secret that fraudsters increase their activity and fraud attempts during the holiday season when many merchants are at peak volume, but considering other fraud factors ACI Worldwide predicts a more than 40 percent increase in fraud this holiday season.  Meanwhile the FBI warns of fraudulent merchants, mobile apps with malware and work from home scams that become more prevalent during the holiday season.

According to estimates from ACI Worldwide, online retailers will see a 12 percent increase in fraud attempts globally this holiday season compared to last year, although the average purchase amount per fraud attempt is expected to be lower. Card Not Present channel fraud attempts in the United States, however, are expected to increase at a much higher rate, 43 percent by volume compared to last holiday season. This significant increase is primarily due to the expected shift in fraud to the CNP channel following the rollout of EMV cards.

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As SEC Investigates Yahoo Breach, FTC Reiterates Need for Federal Breach Notification Laws

Following a data breach involving over 500 million accounts and a delay in notifying the public or impacted parties, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) started an investigation into the Yahoo data breach at the request of a Senator. Later at a Senate Committee meeting the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) cited the Yahoo breach reiterating their support for federal data breach legislation.

Meanwhile as large-scale data breaches continue, so too does identity theft. The FTC received nearly 500,000 identity theft complaints in 2015, a 47 percent increase from the year before.

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