Data security breaches are occurring with such frequency that they have become embedded in the public consciousness. But the epic lapse at Equifax, affecting more than 145 million consumers, proves more than any other the need for accountability for the people and organizations that handle and retain consumers’ sensitive personal and financial data. 

The past few years have brought an alarming jump in the number of data breaches. Remember Target? That breach – one of the total 614 breaches reported in 2013 by the Identity Theft Resource Center – cost the nation’s not-for-profit, member-owned credit unions an estimated $28 million in costs for card replacement and making their members whole. Last year, the center reported 1,092 breaches. This year, the total had reached 1,202 by late November.

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