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A data breach occurs when an unauthorized hacker or attacker accesses a secure database or repository. Data breaches are typically geared toward logical or digital data and often conducted over the Internet or a network connection.
A data breach may result in data loss, including financial, personal and health information. A hacker also may use stolen data to impersonate himself to gain access to a more secure location. For example, a hacker's data breach of a network administrator's login credentials can result in access of an entire network.