Hackers are Not the Biggest Threat to your Company’s Data

By: Arieanna Schweber | 6/23/2016

Mobile devices and unprotected endpoints are becoming the biggest threats to corporate data security. In many instances, malicious and negligent employees are at the helm.

A new report conducted by the Ponemon Institute on behalf of CounterTack indicates that the biggest gaps in current endpoint security models exist in:

The report further states that 76% of organizations have noted an increase in the severity of endpoint incidents in the past 12 months, supporting the claim that the increased usage of mobile devices creates greater opportunity for threats to occur.

Are You Prepared for a Data Breach?

According to the 2016 State of the Endpoint Report, many organizations (56%) are unprepared to deal with the current threats of today. This includes:

  • Attacks on the endpoint
  • Staged attacks that exploit login credentials
  • Malware attacks
  • Ransomware attacks

The report further addresses the growing awareness that people are the weakest link. Employees careless actions often accidentally make the organization open to attack. 80% of the IT security practitioners surveyed indicate that employees are the biggest threat to the company, not hackers.

Larry Ponemon, President of Ponemon Institute, notes: “Today, enterprises need to be vigilant in educating employees, enforcing security policies and securing all endpoints, if they have any hope of minimizing their risk associated with breaches.”

Unprotected Endpoints Are Becoming the Biggest Threat to Corporate Data Security

The survey reveals that 43% of organizations believe laptops are the biggest endpoint threat, with smartphones at 30% and quickly becoming the greatest risk. Currently, 28% of organizations claim that half or more of the endpoint devices connecting to their network aren’t secured. A previous survey found that exploited mobile devices account for one-third of cyber security incidents, not to mention the myriad of other ways employees intentionally or accidentally put data at risk on the endpoint.

How to Protect Mobile Devices?

What these surveys, and many others, have highlighted is the importance of protecting your mobile devices, and the data it contains, from both external and internal threats. We believe that a layered security model would include not just protection from viruses or malware, but additional technologies and policies designed to protect both endpoint devices and data from internal threats as well.

71% of organizations find it difficult to enforce their own endpoint security policies | The 2016 State of the Endpoint Report

At Absolute, we believe that the first step in protecting the endpoint, and the data it contains, is first to increase visibility. You cannot enforce a data security policy if you have no idea where your data is or how it is being protected.

Absolute Endpoint Data Discovery (EDD), a feature of Absolute DDS, helps shine a light on data on endpoint data. By defining what data is important to track, you can remain in control of your data wherever it is and at any time. It also gives you the ability to enforce data security policies before an incident occurs, or to quickly respond to an incident (with remote tools such as data delete) before it escalates into a data breach.

We provide an unprecedented level of visibility into the endpoint, with automatic alerts for changes in device or user behaviour and a variety of specific trigger situations.

Our patented Persistence technology allows you to extend your endpoint monitoring and protection capabilities beyond the limitations of traditional software solutions. Get started with a free evaluation version of Absolute DDS today.

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