#Privacy: The dark web has your personal information, but what would you do to get it back?

It is no secret that we are more connected than ever, and while the opportunities this brings are infinite, so too are the risks. It will also come as no surprise that 2019 is set to be the worst year in history for data breaches – the first half of the year alone saw the number of cyberattacks exposing data rise by 54%.

With no sign of slowing down, the threat of a breach is becoming part of the zeitgeist and everyone is aware they could be next. However, this is also making people more aware of who is asking for personal data and how it is being stored.

Despite this, there is a good chance that most of us have some personal data floating around on the dark web, especially if password hygiene isn’t a priority.

This being said, it is undoubtable that most people have a better understanding around password security and the dangers of simple, easily hacked passwords. But in the scenario where your information does end up on the dark web, what would you be willing to do to get it back? How much would you pay? What would you rather do than create strong passwords?

In a recent study commissioned by LastPass, 1 in 4(25 per cent) respondents indicated that they would be willing to pay for their private information to be taken from the black market. Among those who have previously experienced a hack, that number jumped to almost 50 per cent.

How much is your personal information worth?

The average person revealed they’d be willing to spend over £20,000 to buy back their stolen information on the black market. Topping the list of things people value most when it comes to personal information are debit card numbers.

According to our results, people would part ways with almost £7,000 to retrieve their stolen debit card number – £6,991.59 to be exact.

When it comes to passwords, people would also be willing to part ways with large sums of money to get their information back. The average person would be willing to shell out £5,477.44 to retrieve their email password from a hacker; meanwhile, online banking passwords were a little less valuable, but still important enough for people to willingly part ways with up to £2,333.26.

What would you give up to secure your data?

Having your personal information stolen can be a tough pill to swallow. We asked respondents some of the mundane things they’d rather do or endure than having their personal info stolen.

We found that 39 per cent revealed they’d rather sit in traffic, while another 30 per cent of people are happy to do their taxes if that would avoid having their personal information hacked or stolen.

Beyond what people would rather do than have their information stolen is what they’d be willing to give up.

According to the data, it turns out that 35 per cent of people would much rather give up alcohol, while another 33 per cent of the people surveyed revealed they’d happily forgo reality TV and another third would give up coffee and chocolate if that meant they’d keep their personal information safe and protected from a potential breach.

Putting up defences to defend against breaches

We live in a digital world, so passwords play a huge part in overall personal security. Despite this, people continue to neglect basic best practices of password hygiene.

For example, they’re leaving themselves vulnerable by using weak, easy to crack passwords and then using those same passwords across all of their other online accounts. To ensure your accounts and sensitive info are safe, use long, complex and ideally completely random passwords, that are unique to every service and website.

All of this being said, it is unrealistic to remember dozens of long, strong passwords, but there is a solution that protects and is user friendly.

A password manager can solve both problems. It easily creates unique passwords for each online account, stores them securely and automatically fills them when the website is next visited.

A platform like this can also store sensitive personal data like addresses, credit card details and passport information, so it can protect so much more than just passwords.

Password managers also work with you not against you, taking into account that we are all busier than ever and don’t have time to worry about passwords. It will sync across all devices, so you know you are protected no matter where you logon.

By Barry McMahon, Senior Manager, Identity and Access Management, LogMeIn


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