SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Data breaches put the personal information of 2.5 million people in the California at risk, according to a report released Monday.
State Attorney General Kamala Harris released the report showing 131 breaches of consumer information were reported in 2012.
The report found that the retail industry reported the most breaches, with financial institutions and insurance providers next on the list.
Harris said companies should use encryption and increase security to better safeguard consumer information.
“Data breaches are a serious threat to individuals’ privacy, finances and even personal security,” Harris said in a statement. “Companies and government agencies must do more to protect people by protecting data.”
The information of 1.5 million of the people on the list would have been protected had the companies involved encrypted the data when moving it or sending out of their networks.
The report comes after a bill passed in 2012 that requires companies to report information breaches of more than 500 consumers to the attorney general. Business and government agencies are required by law to notify consumers when a data breach may have put their personal information at risk.
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