Insider Threat Report: 7 Key Takeaways

Half the companies surveyed have had an insider attack in the past year. That’s why they’re increasingly turning to security solutions that monitor behaviors.

Insider threat cyberattack report

A new study by Cybersecurity Insiders, co-sponsored by Interset, offers a comprehensive view of insider threats. Why focus on insider threats? These attacks are now endemic.

According to the Insider Threat 2018 Report, roughly half of companies and government agencies surveyed have experienced an insider attack in the past 12 months. Instigated by negligent or malicious employees, they often appear like behavior that’s native to networks—something rules- or threshold-based security tools cannot spot. This is why they’re notoriously difficult to catch.

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Some interesting findings:

  1. 90% of organizations feel vulnerable to insider attacks
  2. 37% of the above chalk this up to too many users, with too many privileges
  3. 67% see phishing as the greatest enabler of accidental insider threats
  4. 90% think it’s necessary to monitor how insiders access sensitive data
  5. 88% think it’s necessary to identify high-risk insiders based on their behaviors
  6. 86% already have or are building an insider-threat program
  7. 55% leverage security analytics
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As you can see, the bad news is that insider threats are rampant. But the upside is that enterprises are noticing this and taking it seriously. What’s particularly telling are Nos. 4, 5, and 7. These all suggest what we’ve been noticing among enterprise security teams: a palpable shift towards embracing behavior-based security solutions. The uptick in security-analytics investments reflects a dire need for quicker and more accurate threat detection.

In particular, security analytics that use unsupervised machine learning are quickly proving to be formidable obstacles to insider threats. These analytics keep pace with growing enterprise data, creating the notion of human-machine teaming—which is sure to become a business-transforming cybersecurity trend in the coming year. Because perimeters are always morphing, effective innovations in fighting insider threats are resoundingly from the inside.

Want to learn more about mitigating insider threats? Join our insider-threat webinar on Jan. 30, 2018.

Click to download the full insider-threat report