Cloud Computing Data Breaches in News Media: Disclosure of Personal and Sensitive Data

Publication Name

International Symposium on Technology and Society, Proceedings


Cloud computing has changed how businesses adopt information and communication technology (ICT) services that can be provisioned dynamically, providing more capacity and capability as required without the huge upfront capital expenditure. As consumers continue to use more and more online self-service portals, they increasingly leave digital footprints and personally identifiable information (PII) behind. Hackers, cloud configuration vulnerabilities, insider attacks, and accidental information security leaks are commonplace today, affecting tens of millions, if not hundreds of millions of end-users. This article recounts the story of three of the most significant data breaches internationally, Sony PSN (2011), eBay (2014) and Yahoo! (2014), through the lens of news media at the height of the data breaches. The article captures a variety of cloud computing stakeholder perspectives, identifying key socio-technical considerations that need to be addressed over the longer term for the protection of the end-user, and the continuous improvement of cloud services.

Open Access Status

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Link to publisher version (DOI)