According to personal identity security firm, Identity Force, 2016 was the largest year ever for data breaches. Here’s a month by month summary of 2016 cyber theft events. The full report with details of each breach can be found on their website.


January 25, 2016: FACC, an Austrian-based aerospace parts manufacturer (with clients like Airbus and Boeing), announced they fell victim to hackers in January 2016.

University of Central Florida

February 8, 2016: At the beginning of February 2016, the University of Central Florida announced a data breach that affected approximately 63,000 current and former students, faculty, and staff.

U.S. Department of Justice

February 9, 2016: Hackers angry about U.S. relations with Israel tried to call attention to their cause in February 2016 by breaching the U.S. Department of Justice’s database.

Internal Revenue Service

February 29, 2016: The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced that the data breach they uncovered in May 2015 was much larger than initially believed.

UC Berkeley

February 29, 2016: The financial data of more than 80,000 University of California, Berkeley students, alumni, employees, and school officials was compromised around December 2015 and announced to the public in February 2016.


March 3, 2016: 700 current and former Snapchat employees had their personal information stolen when hackers used a phishing scam to trick an employee into e-mailing them the private data.

21st Century Oncology

March 10, 2016: 21st Century Oncology, a Fort Myers-based company offering cancer care services, revealed in a statement on their website that 2.2 million patients may have had personal information stolen when the company’s system was breached in October 2015.

Premier Healthcare

March 10, 2016: A data breach was reported by Premier Healthcare, a multispecialty provider healthcare group, after a laptop computer was stolen from the billing department of their Bloomington, Indiana headquarters.

Verizon Enterprise Solutions

March 25, 2016: Verizon Enterprise Solutions, a division of Verizon known for providing IT services and data breach assistance to businesses and government agencies around the world, was hit by hackers who stole the information of about 1.5 million customers.

Systema Software

March 28, 2016: A data breach at California-based Systema Software was not the result of hackers, but an internal error during a system upgrade in which data storage was set up improperly and made publicly available on the Internet.

Tidewater Community College

March 28, 2016: Current and former employees of Tidewater Community College (TCC) in Norfolk, Virginia had their personal information stolen in a tax season phishing scam.

MedStar Health Inc.

March 30, 2016: The FBI is investigating a computer virus that paralyzed MedStar Health-operated hospitals in Maryland and Washington.

Philippine Commission on Elections

April 11, 2016: A breach of the database for the Philippe Commission on Elections (COMELEC) prompted Infosecurity Magazine to say it “could rank as the worst government data breach anywhere.”

Multiple Major E-mail Providers

May 5, 2016: Milwaukee-based Hold Security discovered more than 270 million e-mail usernames and passwords being given away for free in the Russian criminal underground.


May 11, 2016: In January 2016, Wendy’s began investigating a potential data breach after receiving reports of unusual activity involving payment cards at some of their restaurant locations.

June 16, 2016 Update: In June 2016, Wendy’s announced that their data breach was worse than they originally thought.


May 17, 2016: A 2012 data breach came back to haunt LinkedIn when 117 million email and password combinations stolen by hackers four years ago popped up online.

Newkirk Products

August 12, 2016: In August 2016, Newkirk Products, a service provider that issues healthcare ID cards, announced a data breach that may have affected up to 3.3 million people.


August 12, 2016: The company that owns the MICROS point-of-sale system, used in more than 330,000 cash registers around the world, became the victim of a data breach, which was announced to the public in August of 2016.


September 2, 2016: The popular file-hosting service was forced to confront a data breach from four years ago that affected more users than originally believed.


September 22, 2016: In what may be the most expansive data breach of all time, Yahoo announced that a hacker had stolen information from a minimum of 500 million accounts in late 2014.


October 20, 2016: Over 43 million Weebly users were notified about a data breach that happened in February, but was just discovered in October.

National Payment Corporation of India

October 20, 2016: The National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI) was notified by international banks, primarily in the U.S. and China, that some of its customers’ debit cards were being used illegally.


November 3, 2016: An incorrect security setting on the mobile version of Cisco’s “Professional Careers” website created a privacy hole that exposed the personal information of job-seekers.

November 13, 2016: AdultFriendFinder, an X-rated website, was targeted by hackers for the second time in two years.

San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency

November 25, 2016: San Francisco’s public railway system, known as Muni, was infected with malware over the Thanksgiving weekend; this resulted in locked kiosks and computers and two days of free rides for passengers until the system went back online on Sunday, November 27.


December 14, 2016: Less than three months after announcing a 2014 data breach that affected 500 million users, Yahoo did it again — and even bigger than before.

That’s a scary list of online companies, retail companies, public agencies and private companies who all suffered data breaches. The point is ALL of your clients need cyber liability coverage. If they aren’t convinced, show them this list, and then give us a call to begin crafting a program for them.



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