People are embracing personal responsibility for data protection in 2024 for a reason. As per the most recent research, humans produce over 2.5 quintillion bytes of data daily, making us all susceptible to identity theft, cybersecurity breaches, and abuse of data.

In response to the growing threats against private data, a lot of people are concentrating on finding ways to remove personal information from the internet and reduce their digital footprint, which will prevent data brokers from accessing and abusing it.

There is no immediate end in sight for data dangers. Despite the increasing accessibility of data cleanup technologies, the ethical challenges posed by data threats are always changing and emerging in tandem with technological advancements.

The Hazard of Data Brokers

Data brokers, or online organizations that gather data from your digital footprint and sell it to other businesses, are some of the most important participants in the data environment. By doing this, they are gathering data, such as your name, age, profession, email address, home address, and phone number, that can be combined to develop a digital profile.

The need for data has increased in recent years due to the growing importance of big data for commercial success. This has allowed data brokers to expand in spite of laws protecting personal information such as GDPR, PDPA, CCPA, and others.

In the previous year, the data broker industry was estimated to be worth about $280 billion. Over the next four years, this market is anticipated to develop at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.5%, with a projected size of $545.431 billion by 2028. Their technology and strategies are permitted to advance as the industry grows, which helps them to change over time and increase their danger level.

The Relationship Between Data Threats and Changing Technology

In relation to the data landscape’s progress, technology is yet another important issue to take into account. It’s not always the case that the companies collecting personal data are the problem; sometimes, the problem lies in the measures they take to safeguard customer information and prevent it from falling into the wrong hands.

Although emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence have the potential to improve cybersecurity, recent research indicates that they have also contributed to an 8% increase in cybercrime. This is because hackers are using these new technologies to breach systems and steal sensitive information. Particularly with artificial intelligence, hackers can produce convincing phishing emails quickly, automate denial-of-service attacks, produce deepfakes, and develop malware and ransomware to exploit vulnerabilities in cybersecurity.

In the upcoming years, more cybercriminals than ever will be able to successfully carry out cyber breaches, even with fewer resources or expertise, leaving online data even more exposed than it is at the moment.

How Are You Able to Help?

Businesses and individuals must take a proactive, multi-layered approach to data protection in 2024 due to the complex and constantly changing landscape of data risks. This entails developing good cybersecurity practices on an individual basis, such as implementing multi-factor authentication, creating strong, one-of-a-kind passwords for various accounts, and being alert to phishing and scam emails.

Other essential actions include employing reliable antivirus and anti-malware programmes and updating operating systems and software on a regular basis to address vulnerabilities. People ought to think about employing encryption for communication and data storage while handling sensitive information. Socially, you may reduce the danger of fraud and identity theft by exercising caution when disclosing too much personal information online.

This entails carrying out frequent risk analyses and putting in place an extensive cybersecurity architecture, such as the NIST Cybersecurity architecture. Employee education on cybersecurity best practices and the most recent threat landscapes is essential because one of the largest security flaws is still human error. In addition, companies need to make sure they have a robust Cyber Incident Response Plan in place, which covers not only the technical response but also stakeholder communication tactics. To quickly modify defences, it’s essential to stay up to date on the most recent cybersecurity trends and threat intelligence.

In conclusion

Although the issue is complex, these are two of the primary areas where data dangers are developing. We will be leaving ourselves vulnerable to these threats even with new data policies in place, as long as we are leaving a digital trail.

In order to address this, it’s critical that you take control of your data and take all reasonable steps to remove it off the internet. As we’ve already stated, you must act first, but the resources and tools are at your disposal to help. By upgrading your defences, you may thwart emerging data risks and prevent them from exploiting your data.