Study Finds Health and Financial Sectors Most at Risk of Cyberattacks


A new study has revealed a rise in cyberattacks across the US, particularly targeting the healthcare and finance industries. The study, conducted by data collection company SOAX, identified 117 million victims impacted in total across both these industries in 2023.

The healthcare industry is the most vulnerable sector, topping the ranking with 809 data violation cases in 2023. This is a 136% increase on the 343 cases identified in 2022. Further data revealed that these cases affected 56 million victims within the healthcare industry.

The financial services industry ranked second most at risk, with 744 reported data violation cases in 2023. Additionally, this sector witnessed a notable surge in cyber incidents, with reported cases rising from 269 in 2022 to 744 in 2023, a 177% increase and the highest among all industries. Moreover, out of the 744 reported data cases, 61 million victims were affected.

The study utilized data from the Identity Theft Resource Center on the number of data violation cases from 2020 to 2023 by industry. SOAX says the results underscore the need for industries to invest in cybersecurity measures, particularly in sectors most vulnerable to malicious intrusions. The professional services and manufacturing sectors were the third and fourth most impacted sectors.

The study also identified the industries that experienced minimal impact from cybercriminal activities, with the HR/staffing sector emerging as the least affected. This sector reported ten data violation incidents in 2023, affecting 239,000 individuals.

Equally noteworthy is the social services sector, which saw 15 instances of data breaches in 2023, significantly fewer compared to other industries. Consequently, it affected the fewest number of victims, totalling just 193,000 individuals.

“The study has identified a concerningly sharp rise in cyber incidents across all US industries in 2023, which is particularly alarming, especially within the healthcare and financial services industries,” said SOAX Co-founder and CEO Stepan Solovev. “These sectors store vast amounts of sensitive information, making them lucrative targets for cybercriminals.”

“Maintaining effective cybersecurity practices is crucial for mitigating risks and protecting against potential breaches. The increase in attacks demonstrates that cybercriminals pose an increasing threat. Industries must adapt and evolve with these technological advancements to ensure they are protected from cyberattacks.”