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Ensuring Your Data Security Against the Insider Threat

intelligentID | April 7, 2017

When it comes to modern business, it is a recognized belief that the world is “shrinking.” Due to ongoing trends in technology and communication, the utilization of cloud-based storage systems, and electronic and cyber business-to-business collaboration, it has never been easier to conduct daily operations within every industry. But, with that staggering convenience comes the inevitable danger of data security penetration. With more and more team members have the ability to share and receive information to increase productive workflow, the ratio of data loss prevention incidences only increase. In the end, the only proactive measure that team leaders can make is to be educated in their preventive measures.

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In today’s modern business world, be sure that your organization is protected against the insider threat.

Intelligent ID is state-of-the-art in its approach and core philosophies regarding cybersecurity, stressing the importance of proper data monitoring and shifting focus to your company’s endpoints — the root of all data sources, and the most vulnerable area to a potential insider threat. Everything that happens in your organization begins and ends with an endpoint device. That includes everything that goes right and everything that goes wrong. When data is leaked, malicious processes executed, confidential files duplicated, resources used – all of it happens on endpoints. The insider threat stands as one of the top challenges facing an organization’s security. Breaches caused by the insider can be more costly and harder to detect than outside database attacks because, by their very nature, they are coming from a trusted source – your own employees. Nearly a quarter of all cybercrime aimed at organizations within both the private and non-profit sectors is the product of an insider threat — and  nearly all penetrate an organizational system’s endpoint first.

In the last half-decade, over 50% of all organizations reported a cybercrime incident originating as an insider threat. Often these data losses are accidental; the well-meaning employee who misplaces a thumb drive containing patient records while working from home or the busy executive who accidentally adds the wrong recipient on a vital M&A email. Insider theft can also be quantified in terms of lost time and resources caused by employees conducting personal business during work hours or getting too caught up in an online shopping spree.

Many tools originally developed to improve the work productivity and employee work-life balance have inadvertently become major gateways towards potential insider threats, as well. Aside from infecting an organization’s system with malware, personal devices such as cell phones and tablets facilitate copying of company data. When an employee decides to quit, copies of company data often stay on these devices, leading to dangerous levels of undetectable data loss.

Other times, losses can, unfortunately, be malicious, and perpetrated by a disgruntled staffer or a contractor on their way to a new position. In this instance, the insider threat can come in the form of a malicious hacker or outside individual posing as a member of the targeted organization using false credentials. That individual obtains access to the computer systems or networks, and then conducts activities intended to cause deliberate harm or extract stolen data. Many cases involve disgruntled employees who believe that the organization has wronged them and is merely seeking revenge.  In this instance, that perpetrator is in a unique position to know the data-web well, making for easier infiltration and theft. Their malicious activity usually occurs in four steps: First, gaining the necessary entry to the network, familiarizing themselves with the nature of the data-web system in order to learn its vulnerable points and, finally, setting up a remote workstation from which their malicious activity can take place.

Our full data security suite is equipment with a multi-tier system of applications to ensure that your data is protected, literally, from every angle. Our simple process begins by identifying where your sensitive data resides using SmartScan ID. This unique tool identifies every piece of sensitive information in your environment based on the content of the file itself, returning a report of what the data is and precisely where it is located. By utilizing a scanning method that does not rely on the placement of file tags, SmartScan ID can identify partial documents, snippets of data, or sensitive data that has been moved into new document formats. We then guide you through continuously protecting and monitoring data’s use with our flagship endpoint monitoring product, Endpoint ID. When paired together, these adaptive applications will keep you up-to-date with where your breach risks reside, what areas of the environment need heightened monitoring, and can conduct your forensic investigations for you should the need arise.

The beauty of Intelligent ID’s system is truly the pragmatic applying of our philosophy of knowing exactly where your network system’s vulnerability lies. By utilizing our lightweight Endpoint ID client on your endpoint devices, we can provide a new layer of insight and protection to activity as it occurs regardless of whether the endpoint is onsite, off-network, or on the other side of the world. By monitoring your data’s endpoints, your organization is fully protected and monitoring in every area of its functionality. When that insight is combined with Network ID’s device connection analysis, SmartScan ID’s file location and data-at-rest reports, and Encrypt ID’s innovative file transfer protection, your organization has never been more informed and you have never been in more control over your organization’s full data security.

A recent study by the Ponemon Institute found that over half of employees took company records or intellectual property with them when they left their job, 62% of respondents don’t feel that they did anything wrong by doing so, and a whopping 70% report that their company has no means in place to stop them from accessing confidential data.  What this tells us is that as much as we hate to admit it, someone will eventually leave the company and someone will take it all with them when they go.

The unfortunate result is nearly $3 trillion in employee fraud losses globally per year. In 2012 alone, it was calculated that US-based industries suffered approximately $40 billion in losses due to some form of insider threat. The damage caused by these forms of incidents is reported to be greater than any other form of cybercrime, primarily due to an insider threat’s various forms. An unlike deliberate outsider attacks on an organization’s data-web, insider cyberattacks are often under-reported. Only a few cases are revealed to the public or are even known to insider threat experts, often due to insufficient damage or evidence to warrant prosecution, and concerns about tarnished reputations. The risk of revealing confidential data and business processes during investigations may be another reason why many companies don’t report and prosecute insider threat incidents.

Intelligent ID recognizes each step in a such an insider threat and includes multiple functionalities to address them all.

Intelligent ID is endpoint-based user monitoring and analytics software that secures organizations’ business assets by continuously monitoring and alerting management to suspect events taking place anywhere an endpoint may travel. This includes data loss or theft activity, compliance infractions, workplace liability issues, inefficient use of time and resources, infrastructure concerns, insecure file access, and more. For further information, visit us at www.intelligentid.com or contact us at info@intelligentid.com.

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