Sorry, America. You've already been hacked.

Last month, T-Mobile, the nation’s largest wireless carrier, was hacked. In 2020, hackers accessed the customer data of 2.5 million customers of alcohol delivery app Drizly. In 2019, the information for 30 million payment cards used at Wawa convenience stores was stolen through a breach in the company’s payment systems. Those are just a small sampling of hacks from the last few years. To put it bluntly, you, dear reader, have likely already been the victim of a hack.

“The answer is yes, you've been hacked,” Justin Cappos, an NYU Tandon Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, told Yahoo Finance. “Your data, and everyone else's, is probably out there from one data breach or another… there's really nothing you can do once [your data] gets out.” 

While various members of Congress have proposed consumer data protection laws, Cappos explains that “legally, a lot of things have to change to make a really meaningful improvement in this area, and when you have companies like Facebook and Google that would be very strongly opposed to this, you can see why it's very unlikely that legislation of this sort would get passed.”