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What threats exposed user data can pose to your company
What threats exposed user data can pose to your company

Learn why user data exposed in data breaches can pose a threat to your company.

Micke Ahola avatar
Written by Micke Ahola
Updated over a week ago

User information exposed in data breaches can pose a serious threat to your company. This ranges from immediate and urgent threats such as the exposure of passwords, which can lead to cyber criminals gaining access to company systems if your users have re-used passwords across accounts, to the threat of impersonation if any of your users' personal details have become exposed.

Here's a breakdown of commonly breached user details and how these could be used by cyber criminals.

Email addresses

These will be present in every breach that is visible on uBreach, as your users' emails are used to find their exposed credentials. An attacker having the email address of one of your users is not generally a risk in itself, as this is likely to be public information anyway.


If a user has had their password exposed in a breach, it is likely to be a more major cause of concern. If the password has been cracked, it will have allowed an attacker to access the user's account on the service on which the breach happened. More importantly for you, however, is that a very high proportion of people reuse their passwords across online services. This means that your user could be using that same password to protect their company email account or any of their other business logins, causing a risk to your business network.

IP addresses

IP addresses - the unique numbers associated to every device that connects to the internet - sometimes appear in breaches. This will have happened when a service stores the IP addresses that their users log in from. Knowing your company's IP addresses could help an attacker launch an attack such as DDOS, but as IP addresses are fairly easy to harvest, having them exposed in breaches does not necessarily cause a significantly heightened risk to your organisation.

Personal details including birthdays, job titles etc.

Any personal details that are exposed in breaches cause a heightened risk of phishing and social engineering. An attacker could use information like one of your users' birthdays in order to help them pretend to be someone within the organisation. Exposed personal information also causes a high stolen identity risk, which could allow an attacker to bypass security protections to access the users' accounts.

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