Think Inside the Box 

We mostly think about cyberattacks as coming from an external source—someone or something outside the organization and, well, often outside the country. But there is something else much closer to home we really need think about. It lurks and waits, using business data every day, and it may even be sipping a latte in your conference room right now. It’s called the Insider Threat.


There’s the obvious version, a disgruntled or mischievous employee who might attempt to sabotage or steal data like the company CRM or access confidential files or financials. And in more sophisticated scenarios, they might put viruses on the network or intentionally delete data.


There’s also sweet Alex who everyone loves for bringing in cookies and muffins. Alex probably does a fantastic job taking care of customers and assisting team members. But after a long day of work, all it takes is for Alex to make one mistake…

  • Send an email to the wrong email address
  • Place a sensitive file in the wrong folder
  • Leave a USB key with sensitive data at the coffee shop

Not Just Employees

An Insider Threat is defined by Homeland Security as, “a current or former employee, contractor, or other business partner who has or had authorized access to an organization’s network, system, or data.” One local example, this week right here in Maine we learned of an incident this week where a contractor posted confidential, private information of over 2,000 people who receive foster care benefits on a public website… by accident.

The Biggest Threat We Face?

An article from The State of Security paints the picture, stating “when you combine the incidents involving malicious and inadvertent insiders, you will see that they are dwarfing any other computer security threat that your company faces.”

But come on…what could really happen? My people are great!

Let’s consider a few real-world “insider threat” scenarios to keep in mind:

  • CEO: Receives a sophisticated phishing email. Fills in credentials and provides login/password. Same credentials used on all systems.
  • Sales Rep.: Takes company CRM & price lists to bring to their next employer. Used for competitive purposes.
  • Finance Manager: Wants to work from home on the weekend, puts financials on a USB key, loses it at the local coffee shop. Critical information gets in the wrong hands.
  • Reception: Receives a well-orchestrated fraudulent phone call. Provides confidential company information over the phone. Criminal plots an upcoming attack.
  • CFO: Falls for a phishing email from what seems to be the CEO. Approves rush invoice payment. Funds sent to attacker.

Protect Yourself From the Inside Out

Protecting against insider threats, intentional and unintentional, is a critical aspect of cybersecurity. It starts with awareness, recognizing the real risks that exist in every organization.

  • Build a cyber smart culture in your organization through ongoing education, training, and testing. Make sure every team member understands what insider threats are and look like.
  • Deploy cyber strong technology such as DLP (Data Loss Prevention) solutions that enforce policy and prevent sensitive data from leaving the network in the wrong way. Ensure all users understand that they are in place, how they’re being used, and most importantly, why.

To think outside the box on how you might improve your cybersecurity posture, don’t forget to think inside the box.

Stay Safe,

Your Friends @ Defendify

Resources & insights

Why You Could Be Denied Cyberattack Insurance Coverage
Why You Could Be Denied Cyberattack Insurance Coverage
As you’re working toward achieving robust cybersecurity, the subject of cyber attack insurance coverage and cybersecurity insurance requirements is sure to enter the discussion.
Cost of a Cyberattack vs. Cybersecurity Investment
Cost of a Cyberattack vs. Cybersecurity Investment 
Detailing the cost of a cyberattack versus the ROI of a cybersecurity investment enables leadership to see cybersecurity solutions are worth it.
Defendify Listed as a High Performer in Six G2 Grid Categories
Defendify Listed as a High Performer in Six G2 Grid Categories
The Defendify Cybersecurity Platform has been listed as a High Performer in six Summer 2022 Data Security Software Category Reports on the technology review site G2.

Protect and defend with multiple layers of cybersecurity

Defend your business with All-In-One Cybersecurity®.

Explore layered

Learn more about Defendify’s three key layers and All-In-One Cybersecurity®.

How can we help?

Schedule time to talk to a cybersecurity expert to discuss your needs.

See how it works

See how Defendify’s platform, modules, and expertise work to improve security posture.

Take the first step toward comprehensive cybersecurity with a free Defendify Essentials package

Gain access to 3 award-winning cybersecurity modules. Nothing to install. Nothing to pay for.