Almost all companies will hire highly paid, competent and skilled security professional; companies would even pay for their incident handling training or any other information security training just to have someone who will be able to watch over their systems. A person who can configure the access policies in a company’s system, patch the computers and improve the overall security of the company’s system.
While on the other hand, they will hire a security guard on a minimum wage just to protect the company’s million dollars worth of computer equipments.
If you are a hacker, which path will you likely try to take in order to steal the company secrets? Would you spend hours, days, weeks or months just to hack into the company’s tough security network and in the event of entry you will be automatically barred off by the watchful eye of a highly paid cyber security expert? Or would you try dealing with the poorly paid and motivated security personnel?
Although, hacking the company network is one of the greatest threats a company will ever face, still there is one great threat that they always overlook. That threat is hacking the security guard or social engineering and that danger is always imminent. Without the collective efforts of computer security and physical security, then there is no information security.
Information security is the combination of complete access control on the computer systems as well as the building management. It ranges from how the people get in and out of the building, how the staff dispose their garbage, computer security, incident response, background check in every employees, video surveillance and etc. One of the most common lapses in the company’s physical security is when one door in the building is unlock when one of the employees leave the building for a break. This will completely cancel out the expensive card key system of the building and an information thief will just wait for the right opportunity when employees leave the door open or unlocked.
Every social engineering attacks used in stealing information have different approaches or tactics. The easiest targets for these thieves are untrained, poorly paid and poorly motivated employees because these employees are the easiest person of the company to influence. It is not about having more security personnel; it is all about telling the employees what to do and what to look out for. A motivated, well trained and well paid employee will enjoy the job they have and are always responsible; they will not let their bosses down because they feel that they are needed by the company.
When hiring new employees, companies must include a complete background and credit check; this way companies can determine who to hire or not. Candidates who have filed bankruptcy should never be hired, because they can easily be bribed or perhaps seduced into selling the secrets of the company. In fact, those people who have filed bankruptcy aren’t given any security clearances by the federal government.
Hackers could easily steal important information not on the system of the company but from the hand held devices or laptops of employees that are left at their car. Often times, employees will just leave their access cards inside their cars. Companies must have strong policies against leaving behind important devices in the car; instead they should be stored in a secure location inside the company premises. Company websites mustn’t share the names, position, bios and other information of their employees because this could open new avenues for thieves to exploit.
Companies must also train their security personnel about the company’s computer network; they must have the basics about the technology as well as the servers so that they are more aware on the things they should be protecting. Security personnel must be on the look out for hard drives external drives or any writeable media that can be used to steal important company data and secrets.
Finally, the last thing every employee must do to protect the company’s network is to log off the computer after using it – employees don’t need any incident response training for this. This is common knowledge because a hacker who was able to get inside the company will install a software or root kit that will be used to steal information.
The International Council of E-Commerce Consultants (EC-Council) is a member-based organization that certifies individuals in cybersecurity and e-commerce. It is the owner and developer of 20 security certifications. EC-Council has trained over 90,000 security professionals and certified more than 40,000 members. These certifications are recognized worldwide and have received endorsements from various government agencies. They also offer trainings in incident response.
More information about EC-Council is available at www.eccouncil.org.