Security in Context: The BeyondTrust Blog

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Bringing you news and commentary on solutions and strategies for protecting critical IT infrastructure in the context of your business.

Transgression Tuesday: Ways to Avoid a Data Breach

Posted June 28, 2011    Peter McCalister

We’ve talked a lot about change, and how it’s one of the only things in the IT world that remains the same. Another constant is human nature- specifically our reactions when we do something we shouldn’t. People have this funny tendency to hide their wrong-doings: sweep them under a proverbial rug. The problem is that those rugs can turn into uncontrollable problems, and in the IT world mean the dreaded “D” word: Data Breach. Hiding bad habits and improper actions never cloak the issue, but allows the problem to compound until one day it becomes a raging war.

That being said, let’s shake out a couple rugs and bring to light some bad habits that could make your enterprise the next Sony. We’ll start with a couple- I’ve often found that when one bad habit is being practiced, others aren’t far behind. The last thing we want is to overwhelm you, so the two IT sins we’re bringing to your attention today are as follows:

1. Allowing all users to run with administrator rights/root credentials. Allowing everyone access to all IT resources only leaves your sensitive data in danger. Whether its accidental, inadvertent, or intentional, privileges get misused when your company’s assets are available to all.

2. Not running regular inventory of which users have what rights. With changing job descriptions, new hires, lay-offs, and the changing of projects, user privileges change frequently. It is therefore crucial that you analyze privileged identities on a frequent basis, as well. Think about how different Gucci’s story would have been if they had done this- their previous employee wouldn’t have been able to access the information he leaked.

Do you have these habits going on in your enterprise. Now is the time to fix them, before you have to deal with the ramifications of a data breach. Stay tuned for future Transgression Tuesdays- we’ll keep you up to date on warning signs to look out for and traps to avoid.

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Additional articles


Scottrade Breach: Identified by Federal Officials

Posted October 5, 2015    Morey Haber

Late afternoon on October 2nd, news leaked out of another large security breach, now at Scottrade. The identity count of records, in the millions again (4.6 million is the latest). This breach comes on the second day of national CyberSecurity month, the first being Experian/T-Mobile breach.

3d image Data Breach issues concept word cloud background

Experian/T-Mobile Data Breach: When 2 Days is not Enough

Posted October 2, 2015    Morey Haber

On October 1, Experian admitted full responsibility for the loss of T-Mobile customer data. 15 million user records dating back to 2013 were effected in the breach, with data including sensitive information that may be decryptable like social security numbers and drivers licenses.


Who Moved My Front Door? (What is Privileged Account Management?)

Posted October 1, 2015    Nigel Hedges

Not too long ago, I was sitting in a room with a very fluffy sales guy. In between words such as “we’ll make this happen” and “leave it with me, I’ll get it sorted” he asked the question “What is Privileged Account Management”?