Data from the Ponemon Institute and others confirms that business leaders are rightly concerned about loss from threats posed by employees, partners and others with ‘insider’ access to their networks.
Since 2016, Ponemon says, the average number of incidents involving employee or contractor negligence has increased by 26 percent, and by 53 percent for criminal and malicious insiders. Equally disturbing is that, in the past two years, the average number of credential-theft incidents has increased by 170 percent.
What constitutes an ‘insider?’
In its far-reaching study on the topic, solutions provider Better Cloud defines them as “a current or former employee, contractor, or business partner who has access to an organization’s network, systems, or data and is either:
- Compromised (exploited by outsiders through compromised credentials.
- Malicious (intentionally causes harm, either for personal or financial gain).
- Negligent (well-meaning, but accidentally exposes sensitive information).”
Ninety-one percent of 500 IT professionals polled by BetterCloud admitted to feeling vulnerable to insider threats. Business and IT leaders can greatly reduce the specter of insider threats by working with a managed service provider like TeamLogic IT.
There are some steps you can take in advance of contacting outside resources. For example:
- Gain visibility into your workforce and contractors; get a holistic view of who has access to critical data and systems.
- Educate users and vendors. Institute security awareness training and mandate attendance for anyone with contact to sensitive information. Since more than 60% of security incidents are traceable to negligent or careless employees and contractors, such a program is more important than ever.
- Prepare a response plan. Ponemon’s data shows the longer an insider threat lingers, the more costly it gets. The average time to contain an insider threat was 72 days, and only 16% of incidents were identified and contained within 30 days.
Having an incident response plan in place, says Ponemon, is “key to establishing a chain of command, making smart decisions, and resolving issues swiftly. A good plan may also help keep you compliant with best practices for notifying customers and partners in the aftermath of a breach.”
No business is immune to insider security threats. But effective detection, prevention and recovery require specialized skillsets and tools, like those available from TeamLogic IT. Contact us today to make your organization safer and more secure.