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The 10 Biggest Data Breaches Of 2016

While 2015 saw some massive data breaches, 2016 topped it, with two of the largest breaches in history, a massive hack at the Democratic National Committee with major political implications and a continued onslaught of breaches in healthcare, point-of-sale systems and the federal sector.

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1. Yahoo

Yahoo had not only suffered the biggest breach of the year, but the two biggest. In September, it announced it had discovered a breach from late 2014 that affected more than 500 million user accounts. The data breach exposed certain user account information, including names, email addresses, telephone numbers, birthdates, hashed passwords, and in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers, Yahoo said. The company said it believed a nation-state attacker was responsible for the attack. Just a few months later, in December, Yahoo announced a second, larger breach that it said affected 1 billion user accounts. The second breach, which it said was separate from the first, occurred in August 2013, with an unauthorized third party stealing data that included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, birthdates and hashed passwords. The company said it also, in some cases, included encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers. Yahoo said at the time that it has not yet identified how the attackers penetrated its systems, though it said it's now working with law enforcement. The two breaches, each independently considered the largest breaches in history, reportedly has now put the company's pending $4.8 billion acquisition by Verizon in question.

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