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Before You Fire the Company Geek... Print E-mail
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Source: The Washington Post - Posted by Pax Dickinson   
Security If you notice a fellow employee suddenly freaking out or acting really suspicious, he may be having personal problems -- or he may be in the process of hacking the company. So says a new study on "insider threats" released Monday by the U.S. Secret Service and the Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute's CERT.

The study examined 49 insider attacks, carried out between 1996 and 2002, where disgruntled employees took advantage of their access to the company's network and computer resources to destroy data or embarrass fellow employees or their employer. The study focused less on the incidence of hacking committed by trusted employees than on the motivation of insider hackers and the circumstances that allowed them to inflict damage on the affected companies. As such, it includes some interesting anecdotes, but also a lot of "no duh" findings.

For example of the latter, the study's "executive summary" notes that in 62 percent of the cases, "a negative work-related event triggered most of the insiders' actions." The study also found that 82 percent of the time the people who hacked their company "exhibited unusual behavior in the workplace prior to carrying out their activities." The survey surmises that's probably because the insiders were angry at someone they worked with or for: 84 percent of attacks were motivated by a desire to seek revenge, and in 85 percent of the cases the insider had a documented grievance against their employer or a co-worker.

Read this full article at The Washington Post

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