Over 16 million records have been exposed so far in 2018 as a result of data breaches according to state compiled by the Identity Theft Resource Center.

  •  66 breaches of banks or financial institutions that exposed 1,680,722 records.
  • 222 breaches of businesses that exposed 9,532,402 records.
  • 38 breaches of educational institutions that exposed 502,107 records
  • 43 breaches of government and military information that exposed 1,596,208 records
  • 142 medial or healthcare breaches that exposed 2,834,907 records.

That’s a total of 511 breaches in the first five months of the year. And these are only the breaches that have been made public so far. As we’ve all seen, organizations often keep this type of information to themselves for months or even years. And many places aren’t sure just how many records were exposed.  Information exposed ranged from bank passwords to home addresses to credit card numbers.

Among companies experiencing breaches in May alone were Aflac, T-Mobile, Coke, Chili’s restaurants, and Liberty Tax Service.

Educational institutions such as The University of Toledo and The University of Vermont were also hit as well as twenty-two different healthcare facilities.

You can click here to get a complete list of reported breaches in May 2018.  This list is a PDF, so it is printable.

So what can you do? There’s nothing you can do to stop companies or government agencies from having inadequate security measures in place, but you can be vigilant. That means carefully checking bank statement, medical statements, and monitoring your credit cards for unusual activity. Don’t be afraid to ask any company that you do business with what they’re doing to protect your data. That includes your doctor or the college you’re sending your kid to.  When dining out or making smaller purchases, I always just pay cash. You obviously can’t pay cash for everything, but why put your information out there when you can carry a couple of twenties instead?