One common misconception in many industries is that “our data is of no interest to hackers”. While it is true that certain data might have no much monetary value, in general, personally identifiable information is a gold mine for hackers and should be protected accordingly.
On Friday, the Hong Kong-based telephone and toy maker VTech was hacked. Although VTech has insisted that no financial information has been disclosed at all, the fact that the personal information of some 4.8 million people, including around 200K children is very worrying. Personal data, and in special, children’s information needs to be protected with very high standards. Experts think that VTech simply failed to encrypt properly their own database. Experts believe that VTech simply failed to encrypt properly their own database. Such lack of minimum levels of security is setting a worrying precedent for the toy maker industry, which has been believed to be of no interest to hackers. Even more worrying in the case of VTech is the fact that they failed also to inform the Cyber Security and Technology Crime Bureau in HK, which might also reflect the fact that they didn’t have policies in place to manage this kind of incidents.
This is another reminder that no industry is safe from data breaches and that information security needs to be taken quite seriously. If you haven’t done so, this end of the year might be a good time to think about cyber-security policies in your organisation, no matter your industry.