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2.5 million Californians exposed in data breaches

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- A state report reveals 2.5 million Californians have had Social Security numbers, credit card and bank accounts and other sensitive information exposed in 131 data breaches since 2010.

The San Jose Mercury News reports (http://bit.ly/11eSVPY ) the disclosure was made Monday by Attorney General Kamala Harris in the first report of its kind for the state.

The breaches occurred at companies ranging from Barnes & Noble Inc. to American Express Co., at banks and universities, and government agencies.

Harris issued the report under a state law that went into effect last year requiring institutions that collect data to report any breaches involving more than 500 people.

The report says at least 1.4 million of those whose information was exposed could have been easily protected if the data had been encrypted.

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Information from: The Fresno Bee, http://www.fresnobee.com

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