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Saturday, 14 June 2014

Your Biggest Cybersecurity Threat Isn't Coming From the Outside

by Elizabeth Palermo, Business News Daily Contributor

The biggest threat to your company's cyber security isn't malware, phishing scams or even hackers — it's you. In a series of studies published last week, three security research firms asked employees at midsize businesses across America about the biggest threats to corporate cyber security. And while the surveys each pointed to slightly different culprits, the verdict was clear: employees are the weakest link in the security chain.

The largest of the three studies — a Stroz Friedberg online survey of more than 700 information workers — found that senior management may be the biggest threat to an organization's digital well-being. Fifty-eight percent of senior managers reported having (digitally) sent sensitive information to the wrong person. Compare that with just 25 percent of lower-level employees guilty of the same misstep. And more than half of all senior managers in the study admitted to taking files with them after they left a job. Only 25 percent of rank-and-file employees were found to have done the same.

The Stroz Friedberg study also found that 9 in 10 senior managers admitted to uploading work files to personal email and cloud-based accounts, a faux pas that could lead to intellectual property theft and attacks on corporate networks.