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CPNI publishes research into insider threats

UK Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure recently conducted a study into insider threats and has now released a summary report.

The study used data on insider cases collected and analysed between 2007 and 2012. An insider is defined as a person who exploits, or has the intention to exploit, their legitimate access to an organization’s assets for unauthorised purposes.

CPNI identified five main types of insider activity: unauthorised disclosure of sensitive information; process corruption; facilitation of third party access to an organization’s assets; physical sabotage; and electronic or IT sabotage.

The most frequent types of insider activity identified in this study were unauthorised disclosure of sensitive information (47 percent) and process corruption (42 percent).

Significantly more males engaged in insider activity (82 percent) than females (18 percent).

49 percent of insider cases occurred within the 31-45 years age category.

The majority of insider acts were carried out by permanent staff (88 percent); only 7 percent of cases involved contractors and only 5 percent involved agency or temporary staff.

The majority of insider cases in the study were self-initiated (76 percent) rather than as a result of deliberate infiltration (6 percent).

Although financial gain was the single most common primary motivation (47 percent), ideology (20 percent), a desire for recognition (14 percent) and loyalty (14 percent) were also quite common motivations.

Read the report (PDF).

•Date: 3rd May 2013 • UK •Type: Article • Topic: ISM

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