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News

Survey shows Paris residents pose greater insider threat

Imperva : 23 January, 2013  (Technical Article)
Imperva has conducted a survey comparing London residents with those from Paris regarding risk to corporate data through the insider threat
Survey shows Paris residents pose greater insider threat

Imperva has announced the results of a survey showing that Parisians are more likely to take corporate data than their UK counterparts. Imperva’s ‘Insider Threat Survey,’ a repeat of a street survey conducted in the UK two years ago, questioned people across a number of business sectors about their view on confidentiality. When asked if they would personally take corporate data, 78% of respondents in Paris admitted they had, with 63% in London also confessing to the same practice.

While the Parisian respondents prefer to use a USB stick (23%) to take the information away with them, in London this remains about the same but with smart phones the favoured method (41%).

When asked if they’d ever accessed company information at work which is not relevant to their role, 66% of Parisian respondents admitted they had, compared to 41% of London respondents. In both countries, the highest underlying factor that facilitates this activity is unrestricted access to files containing sensitive information (each scoring 51%).

Over half of Parisian respondents stated they knew of someone who had taken data - slightly lower in London at 47%. However, while no respondent in Paris claimed the information was stolen for profit, in London 4% said the information had been taken to ‘sell-on.’

A worrying discovery in this survey is that information is finding its way into the hands of competitors with both countries roughly equally affected, 60% in Paris, 59% in London. When asked how this had occurred, an ex-employee was cited as the main culprit (38% in Paris, 62% in London), although a further 54% in London blamed the leak on outsourcers. In both cities, respondents indicated that the customer database was targeted, 49% in France, 57% in UK.

Imperva CTO Amichai Shulman commented, “Rogue employees should be a major concern across many enterprises. This survey shows that both countries still have a long way to go to address the insider threat. The fact that a significant percentage of employees surveyed not only want to, but actually can, read confidential material is a stark warning that it’s time to put in place stronger security measures.”

When looking at other contrasting differences between the people in each city, highlights include:

* While respondents in Paris prefer to check out salary details (26% vs. 11) and employee records (21% vs. 6%), those in London prefer customer records (39% vs 25%) and strategic documents (31% vs. 18%)
* Respondents in Paris appear more inept, with 17% citing human error for the reason data finds its way into the hands of competitors, compared to just 8% for respondents in London.

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