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News

Protective Monitoring For The Prevention Of Data Breaches

LogRhythm : 31 October, 2011  (Technical Article)
LogRhythm explains the connection between the insider threat and the need for protective monitoring in the prevention of data breaches
Protective Monitoring For The Prevention Of Data Breaches
Today a report published by Big Brother Watch, a privacy campaign group, revealed that the confidentiality of NHS records is breached five times every week, with patient records being exposed in 800 instances in the past three years by more than 150 NHS trusts. As a result, over the last three years 102 health service employees have been dismissed for breaching data protection.

Ross Brewer, vice president and managing director for international markets, LogRhythm, made the following comments:

“The NHS is an enormous organisation with a disparate structure, employing a huge number of people, charged with protecting a vast repository of sensitive data. This makes it particularly susceptible to one of the biggest threats to security – data breaches caused by employees, both intentional and accidental. In this case, NHS staff have been the biggest perpetrators of security breaches, with 129 separate instances of NHS employees looking up details of colleagues and family members, and 57 incidents involving unsecured confidential information being stolen or lost by staff.

“Earlier this year, the Information Commissioner stated that while policies and procedures for data protection may already be in place within the organisation, the NHS clearly needed to find ways to ensure staff both understand and follow that guidance. Unfortunately, no organisation can solely rely on its staff to uphold data protection principles. To be truly secure, systems need to be in place that can automatically alert whenever unwanted activity is taking place.

“By deploying Protective Monitoring capable of collecting and analysing 100 percent of log data generated by IT systems, organisations can detect anomalies – such as a staff member copying data to a personal device or uploading to a social networking site – and take appropriate action in real-time. Had such a system been in place, the NHS could have spotted and dealt with these incidents in the first instance, helping the organisation to clean up its unenviable data protection record. By enhancing visibility of how data is being used, the NHS will significantly improve its ability to ensure data protection best practice is followed by its staff.”
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