JPMorgan Data Breach Could Be Largest Yet


Image Courtesy of Bloomberg

Details of a data breach at JPMorgan Chase are emerging and up to 76 million households and 7 million businesses could be affected; one of the largest such breaches in history.

JPMorgan Chase released details of the cyberattack in a regulatory filing on Thursday and renewed fears about the security of the nation’s financial system.  Unlike previous attacks, which affected the credit card data from retail outlets such as Target, Home Depot, and TJ Max, this incident affected the nation’s largest bank and an institution that controls far more sensitive financial data.

In the filing, JPMorgan reported that there was no evidence that sensitive data, such as social security numbers or passwords, were exposed in the breach and that only customers’ names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses were affected.  They also assured regulators that there has been no evidence of fraudulent activity related to the exposed data.

Even so, the attack again brings to light the vulnerability of the nation’s financial institutions, an industry that had previously been viewed as more secure.  Even more troubling are signs that cybercriminals are stepping up their attempts to reach deep inside financial institutions, going beyond credit card numbers and PINs.  Hackers reportedly bypassed customer accounts and instead focused on applications that are utilized by JPMorgan’s computer systems.  Knowledge of these systems could allow hackers to develop more sophisticated attacks intent on attacking the core systems and exposing more sensitive information.


It is unknown how long the intruders had access to the systems.  By the time security teams detected the breach, hackers had already obtained full access to several of the company’s computer systems and it is still unknown how they managed to reach so far inside the company’s infrastructure.  Still, JPMorgan’s chairman and chief executive has assured shareholders that the corporation is doing everything in its power to keep their data secure and plans to spend $250 million annually to avoid future violations.

How concerned are you about the security of your bank or financial institutions? Let us know in the comments below, or on Facebook, Google+, or Twitter!

Source : The New York Times

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