Privacy / Security

How to avoid a big data security breach

Big data can hold “incredible value” for people who work but the consequences of a data breach that exposes large amounts of information need to be understood, according to Telstra chief security specialist Scott McIntyre.

Speaking at the AusCERT security conference on the Gold Coast, McIntyre told delegates that there is “incredible value in having a lot of information available at your fingertips.”

Using big data means cyber security specialists can get “enriched results” and draw different conclusions, he said.

However, McIntyre had some harsh words for US retailer Target, where a security breach allowed hackers to access the personal information of some 78 million card holders.

He questioned why the US retailer needed to aggregate so much information about its customers. McIntyre said that organisations that are working with large amounts of data for sales and marketing should ask themselves why they are storing a particular piece of information.

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