When confidential or secure information is released to those who are not authorized to access it, this is known as a data breach. Data breaches can occur intentionally by someone hacking into the system and stealing information, or they can occur without the intent to do so. It can be as simple as accidentally forwarding an email to the wrong person.
Data breaches often involve financial information, personal details, or a company’s trade secrets, intellectual property, or documents. Someone may give this information to an unauthorized individual or company, or they may release it publicly online. They occur because of a lack of security or because a person with access made a mistake or decided to leak the data.