What is data manipulation? A misconception is that hackers always steal data, but this assumption is incorrect. Data manipulation attacks occur when an adversary does not take data, but instead makes subtle, stealthy tweaks to data for some type of gain or effect. These subtle modifications of data could be as crippling to organizations as data breaches. Data manipulation may result in distorted perception by shifting data around, which could lead to billions of dollars in financial loss or even potential loss of life, depending on the system in question, and the type of data being altered.