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You And I: The Not So Obvious Insider Threat

Posted December 6, 2011    Peter McCalister

Remember the scene in Jerry Maguire where he has returned to his office to collect his stuff, after learning he has been let go, and he has a bit of a freak-out on the way out the door, grabbing the goldfish and making bold claims about the company he is going to build that will ruin his former employer?

For most of us, that is the perfect visual of a disgruntled former employee and potential insider threat, raising our red flags to immediately take action to remove any and all access privileges that employee had.

annie

But what about the threats which are in much more mundane packaging? The threats posed by you and me – employees that would never dream of deliberately causing harm to our employer, but that pose just as great a risk of an insider threat, albeit accidental. Over privileged and poorly monitored, these employees have the potential to cause as much damage as the obviously disgruntled.

While the percent of breaches that happen by accident is substantially less than the percent of intentional insider threats, according to the 2011 Verizon Data Breach Report, it is important not to overlook this possibility and to ensure that the right privilege identity management policies are in place. A simple misdirected email, such as the case with Stanford Hospital is all the proof you need that accidental insider breaches can happen, to anyone, at any time and the only way to thwart them is to implement strategic corporate security policies with least privilege.

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Additional articles

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How to Audit VMware ESX and ESXi Servers Against the VMware Hardening Guidelines with Retina CS

Posted February 27, 2015    BeyondTrust Research Team

Retina CS Enterprise Vulnerability Management has included advanced VMware auditing capabilities for some time, including virtual machine discovery and scanning through a cloud connection, plus the ability to scan ESX and ESXi hosts using SSH. However, in response to recent security concerns associated with SSH, VMware has disabled SSH by default in its more recent…

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Privileged Passwords: The Bane of Security Professionals Everywhere

Posted February 19, 2015    Dave Shackleford

Passwords have been with us since ancient times. Known as “watchwords”, ancient Roman military guards would pass a wooden tablet with a daily secret word engraved from one shift to the next, with each guard position marking the tablet to indicate it had been received. The military has been using passwords, counter-passwords, and even sound…

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Privileged Account Management Process

In Vulnerability Management, Process is King

Posted February 18, 2015    Morey Haber

You have a vulnerability scanner, but where’s your process? Most organizations are rightly concerned about possible vulnerabilities in their systems, applications, networked devices, and other digital assets and infrastructure components. Identifying vulnerabilities is indeed important, and most security professionals have some kind of scanning solution in place. But what is most essential to understand is…

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