Computer-savvy retired Phoenix lawyer Jim Ryder read about Russian hackers stealing more than a billion network passwords this week and didn’t think twice about it. He didn’t take steps to secure his computer. He didn’t reset any of his financial passwords, says the Arizona Republic. His response to the world’s largest data breach is symptomatic of the “breach fatigue” experienced by more and more consumers, who in the past year have been hammered with dire warnings about cyberattacks and phishing schemes that could invade their privacy and leave them vulnerable to identity theft.
Most people know they are at risk but don’t do anything to protect themselves, according to a study commissioned by credit-monitoring giant Experian. The study found that the majority of people surveyed were stressed over data breaches, but about half failed to take any preventive measures. “Inaction may be a result of data-breach fatigue, as 30 percent of those surveyed received at least two data-breach notifications and 15 percent received three in the last two years while 10 percent received more than five,” the study found. “Unfortunately, more than one-third of consumers ignored the data-breach notification from the company and did nothing.”