Cyber Security – the insider threat
Generally when we think of online hackers, we think of faceless perpetrators whose intention is to scam us out of our hard earned money in one swift malicious attack.
But what if the actual threat of cybercrime is right in front of you, in plain sight?
Organisations of all sizes are at risk of cyber threat from within their own organisation. While companies spend a considerable amount of time and energy on evading external cyber threats, experts have argued that more than 60% of attacks are coming from within the walls of a business.
Many of these attacks have been intentional, however there have been cases where attacks have been committed inadvertently. This can happen staff may become careless with data or accidentally undermine a company’s secure IT systems.
One local case where an internal threat occurred from within was at fashion brand Showpo, whose customers were reporting that they’d been contacted by its competitor. Information began to surface implicating an internal source had obtained personal information and shared this with the competitor.
A UK analysis of insider cyber threat cases found that the motivators behind internal attacks are usually centered around financial gain and revenge.
With the rise in internal cyber threats, the Federal Attorney General’s department has overhauled its ‘Managing the insider threat to your business’ publication which aims to educate managers on how to best navigate their approach to internal cyber security. They suggest implementing sound recruitment procedures which include thorough checks of new staff and tighter security controls on internal access to data.
Experts suggest that it’s important for organisations to be as vigilant towards external cyber threats as internal threats and that there are many ways to do this by monitoring staff behaviour, directing funding and educating employees.