A look back at the cybersecurity fiascoes of 2018

The hottest business topic in 2018 was the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). GDPR is seen as the epitome of data protection legislation that safeguards businesses and organizations from data security breaches. Many companies have improved their technology infrastructures this year to guarantee their GDPR compliance.

While the focus on cyber and information security has increased, there is still a lot of work to be done. Despite all the cybersecurity efforts, last year had some of the most infamous data breaches in recent history. From lack of availability and compromised data to rogue employees leaking confidential information, here are some of the top cybersecurity fiascoes of 2018.

Ticketmaster UK

Those who like going to concerts or boxing matches know that Ticketmaster is the most productive website for ticket sales — except for April to June 2018. A third-party chatbot was embedded in the website for customer inquiries and concerns, and hackers pounced on it. As a result, malware gave cybercriminals access to the credit card credentials and personal information of an estimated 40,000 customers.

British Airways

Airlines have to strictly follow the information security fundamentals of Confidentiality, Integrity, and Availability (CIA), so when British Airway's (BA) data center experienced a major outage in May 2018, it led to 726 canceled flights within three days, leaving over 75,000 passengers stranded. There was also a computer system failure issue in July 2018 that caused delays in flights.

The management of BA couldn't catch a break. In September 2018, the airline suffered a “malicious security breach” where the credit card data and email addresses of 380,000 customers were stolen from its corporate website. BA was liable for multiple cases of credit card fraud between August 21 to September 5, 2018, since the CVVs (the digits at the back of the cards which verify them) of the exposed cards were also taken. All these 2018 events significantly damaged BA’s reputation.

Cambridge Analytica and Facebook

This infamous, massive, and complicated personal data privacy breach remains a hot topic in politics and business even up to this day. In March 2018, the personal data of 50 million Facebook users were gathered and exploited by British political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica through the use of developer platforms. Using all that data, Cambridge Analytica applied their “data enhancement and audience segmentation techniques” for targeted advertising. Many believe these techniques helped get Donald Trump elected president of the United States.

In July of the same year, the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) expressed its intention of fining Facebook €500,000, claiming Facebook "contravened the law by failing to safeguard people's information".

Keep your business away from cybersecurity fiascoes

Every small- to medium-sized business (SMB) owner will have peace of mind knowing that a dependable managed IT services provider (MSP) like Zeta Sky is carefully monitoring their network, proactively managing their cybersecurity on a daily basis, and always recommending the latest policies or technologies necessary to keep their data safe. You always have the option to hire your own in-house team, but if you want to focus on growing your business without worrying about IT concerns, think about working with a trusted MSP.

Related article: Advantages of outsourcing your company’s cybersecurity

Zeta Sky offers cloud desktop solutions for clients in Rancho Cucamonga, Ontario, and Riverside. We go above and beyond to make sure your IT infrastructure is optimized and working efficiently. Call us right now to get a complimentary security consultation.