Most of the time, when it comes to cybersecurity, businesses tend to focus primarily on external threats rather than those that might be lurking in the shadows of their internal operations. Believe it or not, the most dangerous entities out there could very well be working for you, right under your nose.
What Constitutes an Inside Threat?
While there are a number of entities that can threaten your business, many of them come from within. Included are previous workers who might not have left on the best terms, current employees who could be engaging in corporate espionage, or even unknowing end-users who might have allowed external hackers to compromise your network infrastructure.
- Irate former employees: Some employees will quietly pack their things and be on their way without saying a word. Others will make a big fuss and leave in a flurry of rage. It’s the latter that you have to worry about, simply because they could lose their head and leak any information, like passwords and whatnot, to the web. Or, if they’re feeling particularly sneaky, they might attempt sabotage themselves.
- Suspicious co-workers: If there’s some behind-the-scenes action going on in your business, you might suspect that someone internally is behind it. Issues like stealing equipment, devices, or even data, can arise for a variety of reasons. However, it’s most likely for personal gain, like monetary compensation or to assist themselves with other endeavors outside of your business.
- End-user error: Unlike the previous two examples, workers who have made mistakes and cost the company its data security or worse don’t necessarily do so on purpose. This can often be seen by the spear phishing hacker, who will target unsuspecting employees and coerce information out of them with phishing scams.
How You Can Protect Your Business
In order to ensure that your business follows a policy that mitigates insider threats, be sure to follow this action plan:
- Integrate an office security system: While this might seem like a far-fetched idea, it’s a very common occurrence in the small business environment. Organizations just like yours take advantage of security systems to ensure that nobody is breaking into the building, trespassing where they aren’t supposed to, or taking part in any sketchy activity.
- Monitor and maintain your access logs: If you’re concerned that there might be some suspicious activity on your network, you should integrate a comprehensive monitoring solution, complete with access logs that can tell you who accessed the network, from where, and when. This helps to keep only approved users from accessing the network.
- Perform exit interviews: When someone leaves your business, you should implement a thorough process to distinguish whether they own company devices or data, and respond to any concerns you or they might have about their departure. It also gives you a chance to address problems before they become serious issues later on. If someone is fired for seemingly no reason, they will grow bitter, and if they have sensitive information, it’s perfectly reasonable to assume that they will use this information to get back at you. Be sure that any credentials and accounts are quickly taken care of, because the biggest risk comes from employees who still have access to their work accounts.
Symmetric IT Group can help your organization keep both internal and external threats at bay. Give us a call at (813) 749-0895 to learn more.