cloud destinations



Oct 2021


  • Cybersecurity
  • Data Breaches
  • Data Loss Prevention
  • Risk Management


8 Min Read

Insider Threats Can Cause Big Breaches and Damage

In 2019 SANS report on emerging threats, security professionals recognized major gaps in insider threat defense caused by inadequate accessibility into a base point of normal user behavior, as well as the management of privileged user accounts, which reflect a more intriguing benchmark for phishing or credential compromise cases. With 40% of insider events involving an employee with privileged access to business assets, companies must analyze the risks walking inside their doors every day with the same care that they do when defending the perimeter from external attackers.

1. Detect Insider Threats

A potential insider threat is anyone who has insider knowledge and/or access to the organization's private data, IT, or network resources. Insiders have the capabilities, motives, and privileges required to steal critical data, therefore it is the CISO's responsibility to detect and defend against all of those attack vectors. Some of the common Indicators of an Insider Threat are as follows,

Digital Warning Signs

  • Downloading or accessing substantial amounts of data
  • Accessing sensitive data not associated with their job function
  • Multiple requests for access to resources not associated with their job function

Behavioral Warning Signs

  • Attempts to bypass security
  • Frequently in the office during off-hours
  • Displays disgruntled behavior towards co-workers

2. Insider Threats Defense Plan

Organizations can detect and forecast insider threats by tracking the behavior of employees. Being proactive may enable businesses to detect potentially harmful insiders before they steal sensitive information or disrupt operations.

  • Identify and discover the location of your sensitive data
  • Keep an eye on activity, files, and emails on your primary data sources
  • Determine who has access to the data and who should have access to it
  • Use security analytics to detect unusual activities
  • Maintain a paradigm of least privilege throughout your infrastructure
  • Teach your employees how to think about data security

3. Insider Threats Response Plan

Establish an insider threat detection system which allows you to detect an attack early on and develop an effective incident response strategy to reduce potential harm. Monitoring your data, gathering information, and triggering warnings on anomalous behaviour are the keys to fight against insider attacks.

  • Alert the appropriate teams
  • Restore deleted data if necessary
  • Eradicate any malware used during the attack
  • Determine affected users and files
  • Verify the threat severity and legitimacy

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