Last month, the world watched aghast as August became the biggest month ever for data breaches. In one incident alone, over 1.2 billion unique credentials were stolen, in what is arguably the largest data breach to date.

Here’s a breakdown of the eight biggest breaches of August:

Company No. of Records Lost
Community Health Systems 4.5 million
Homeland Security 25,000
Supervalu Unknown
Goodwill Industries International Inc. Unknown
Various Korean Online Games 220 million
Various Websites 1.2 billion
Dairy Queen Unknown
JPMorgan Chase Unknown


Not only are the number of records lost phenomenally high, but a majority of the companies involved are recognizable name brands, which further drives home the point that, if the return warrants the effort required, hackers can penetrate and steal data from networks of almost any size or complexity.

The future of data security may seem grim when you look at statistics like these, especially when you take into consideration the number (and scale) of data breaches has only continued to rise for the past few years. We’ve just barely kicked off September, and already we have two big data breach cases in the iCloud celebrity photo hack and the Home Depot data breach, which is already shaping up to be even larger in scale than the notorious 2013 Target data breach which resulted in the loss of 70 million records, and over $148 million in remediation costs.

As with any bad news, there should always be light at the end of the tunnel and in this case, what these very public hacks are doing is reminding the business community to dedicate focus and resources to better data security. The traditional belief that using firewalls and antivirus means your security is only setting you up to be next in line for the worst.

These situations truly highlight the dangers of handling sensitive data and make us question what is really required to service our customers vs what data should never be stored because there was no real justification in the first place.

Let’s hope it doesn’t get worse before it gets better.

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