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This CEO Thinks Big Tech Enables Data Breaches

This CEO Thinks Big Tech Enables Data Breaches

Data Breached, Hacked, Compromised.

These words have become common features in news headlines and media coverage as national governments and private companies find themselves struggling to prevent bad actors from infiltrating internal systems and delicate information on consumers, users and average citizens.

As new cybersecurity breaches occur and are uncovered, financial institutions face stricter security regulations and heightened public scrutiny to prevent hacking. However, Darren Conte, Founder and CEO of document security company Siftsort, says these regulations only minimize the number of incidents without preventing them from happening in the first place.

“I would think—from an enterprise standpoint—that because of the controls in place help to experience [breaches] less, but that doesn't mean they don't experience them,” Conte said.

Conte explained that Siftsort’s aim is to securely organize important documents so people can work efficiently without worry of breaches and stop-gap cybersecurity measures.

What’s more, Conte believes this is a necessary stop in the evolution of digital security, since the digitization of the world has made people more trusting of providing their information. Most people are not trained to be aware of vulnerabilities, which Conte says has made hacking more commonplace. Malware can hide in something as innocuous as a Gmail login page or a Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) ad.

“Someone in the senior citizen community wants to go on Facebook and see her grandkids, she clicks on an ad and then her computer’s hijacked,” Conte said. “So I think it's a real threat. I think that’s only because I live in an environment where I'm ultra cautious and it's my vocation to be that way, I really am aware of the potential [vulnerabilities].”

Specifically, Conte has been amazed at how people send highly sensitive information over unsecured emails that can be read by hackers instantly. He said legitimate technology companies have been able to use these communication platforms to sell more of their ads, but this can be exploited by hackers because the delivery of the message was sent in an unencrypted format.

“The way [these advertisement companies’] technology works is they're out crawling on unencrypted email messages because they know that it's the most voluminous way that people are sending information to each other,” Conte said. “They can ingest [the information] into big A.I. engines so they can cross-sell you better, but it can also be used by the bad guys in a very intelligent way where it's very easy now to fool people because it just looks more real.”

Tech giants like Facebook and Google-parent Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG) (NASDAQ: GOOGL) may or may not improve their methods for data extraction, However, Conte believes that personal and institutional data breaches can be minimized if and only if individuals are more aware of personal data vulnerabilities.

Posted-In: Fintech Government Regulations Politics Startups Tech Interview General


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