Insider risk management is vital to realizing the potential of the next wave of digital transformation happening in every sector of society.
In a short period of time, a lot has changed. With the rush to remote work at the start of the pandemic, digital transformation moved from a productivity and growth strategy to a business imperative required to keep businesses afloat. Even firms that were previously hybrid were forced to support a whole remote workforce very quickly. It’s clear that there’s no going back as we make our way into the new world of hybrid remote work, which is happening in fits and turns. Insider risk is one of the new challenges in this world.
In early 2020, digital transformation timeframes accelerated by seven years in a matter of weeks. Furthermore, the pace isn’t slowing down anytime soon. As firms actively chase growth, we are now riding the crest of the second wave of digital change. That change is sweeping every industry. This second wave is fantastic for innovation. However, t comes with a danger that can have unintended consequences for any company. That danger is insider risk. Today, insider risk is on the rise, posing a danger to the agility, speed, and creativity that businesses rely on to propel them forward.
Insider Risk: What You Need to Know
Insider risk isn’t a new issue. However, it’s growing more critical as a result of the shifts wrought by this new world of hybrid remote employment. For good reason, information security teams have been concentrating on external cyber threats. These are things like DDoS attacks, malware, and ransomware. These types of attacks dominate newspaper headlines, creating a sense of urgency. In addition, they foster the notion that external attacks are the most dangerous. This is no longer the case.
Any user data exposure event, whether careless, malevolent, or unintentional, is an insider risk. Consider all the files that have been downloaded, uploaded, synchronized, and shared across timezones within your company. Losing control of proprietary data, regardless of motive, can have major reputational, financial, and operational consequences.
When the crown jewels—product designs, source code, and road maps—end up in the wrong hands they present competitive danger. According to recent research, the cost of an insider data breach might amount to as much as 20% of a company’s yearly sales. The effect is real. Furthermore, it’s past time to deal with it.
Prevent Your Information From Falling Into the Wrong Hands
Of course, technology is important for minimizing insider risk. However, when it comes to boosting cooperation, innovation, and speed, we need to start with the people who are at the center of it all: your employees. Employees create insider danger. However, that doesn’t mean you should handle them the same as an external attacker. The intention of hackers is clear: they are malicious. Employees with no malicious purpose, on the other hand, could easily leak data by neglect or mistake.
Treat Your Staff Like Allies
Treat your staff like they are your allies in your cybersecurity efforts to combat insider danger. Transparency is the first step. It’s critical to inform staff about the company’s insider risk monitoring procedures. Companies must inform employees if data movement is being monitored by the business. Therefore, make sure they realize that the company trusts them. However, it’s also important to let them know that they must likewise verify and earn trust.
Security training and awareness are the most crucial aspects of turning employees into allies. In the fight against insider risk, these things make all the difference. Employees must use collaboration tools wisely. In addition, they must do so in accordance with company policy. That implies the organization must first adopt a well-thought-out policy. This must be done before training employees on how to handle data properly.
There will always be hazards to firm data. Even the most attentive security culture can be vulnerable. In this modern cloud-using, work-from-anywhere world, old-school data loss prevention techniques are just not effective enough. These legacy DLP solutions function on the process of first determining where your data is then implementing complex, never-ending policies. Finally preventing people from performing their tasks.
Managing Insider Risk
Managing insider risk necessitates a mentality shift in data security. The shift must go toward results that create company value. In addition, there must be a shift toward new technologies for safeguarding data without interfering with cooperation. Insider risk is a stumbling block to progress and innovation. Insider risk management is critical to realizing the full potential of the next wave of digital transformation.
Image credit: Canva Studio; Pexels