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Blog — Aug 19, 2021


Ep. 2: Stopping Insider Threats

2 minutes read
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Cybersecurity is not an IT problem to solve—it's a business risk to manage. In the Managing Cyber Risk podcast series, Mark Sangster, Vice President and Industry Security Strategist with eSentire, and Cybercrime Magazine’s Hillarie McClure lead conversations with cybersecurity experts, using the dollars-and-cents language of the C-suite to expose the issues, challenges and pitfalls which are often obscured by ones and zeroes.

“The more you sweat in practice, the less you bleed in battle.”

Those words come from Daniel Stiegman, Senior Insider Threat Intelligence Analyst at Equifax, in the second episode of our Managing Cyber Risk series, Stopping Insider Threats, and they discuss the importance of why organizations must prepare proactively for cyber attacks.

While enormous attention is rightfully paid to external threat actors like ransomware gangs and nation states, the downside of this focus is that it can cause organizations to overlook threats from within—threats which can be just as dangerous and more difficult to detect.

Insider threats are often misunderstood. While malicious employees do exist, in many cases, employees are usually taken advantage of—with no harmful motives of their own—to unknowingly assist in the activities of a threat actor.

However, insider threats tend to be more effective because employees are routinely given more access and privileges than is needed. Not all access is created equal, and not every employee—no matter how senior—needs the access they’re asking for. Organizations have to get diligent about “wanting” access versus “needing” access.

Daniel explains that organizations should not look for a single, specific insider, but that instead they should understand patterns of behavior that correspond to people doing their job—and deviations that might be suggestive of malicious activity.

Unfortunately, many organizations don’t recognize the risk of insider threats. Some may think it’s only a problem in large enterprises—Mark quashes this idea with a powerful example—and others may be reluctant to accept that the trust they place in their team may be violated.

While it can be difficult to confront the possibility that an employee may engage in or assist with an attack, managing cyber risk effectively demands that you do. As Daniel says, “Don’t become complacent—that’s the opportunity [threat actors] look for.”

Listen to Episode 2, Stopping Insider Threats, of the eSentire Managing Cyber Risk podcast series in which Daniel Stiegman joins Mark and Hillarie to explore why organizations need to learn to say no to employees to curb insider threat and and learn about:

Be sure to stay tuned for more Managing Cyber Risk. In the next episode, we take a look inside eSentire’s renowned Threat Response Unit (TRU) to learn how they keep pace with the ever-shifting threat landscape.

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eSentire is the Authority in Managed Detection and Response, protecting the critical data and applications of 1200+ organizations in 75+ countries from known and unknown cyber threats. Founded in 2001, the company’s mission is to hunt, investigate and stop cyber threats before they become business disrupting events. Combining cutting-edge machine learning XDR technology, 24/7 Threat Hunting, and proven security operations leadership, eSentire mitigates business risk, and enables security at scale. The Team eSentire difference means enterprises are protected by the best in the business with a named Cyber Risk Advisor, 24/7 access to SOC Cyber Analysts & Elite Threat Hunters, and industry-leading threat intelligence research from eSentire’s Threat Response Unit (TRU). eSentire provides Managed Risk, Managed Detection and Response and Incident Response services. For more information, visit www.esentire.com and follow @eSentire.