Insider Threats Jul 01,2017

Fundamentals ( Planning )

Insider Threats


Motivations for Insider Attacks

Most folks believe that criminal and terrorist gangs pose the greatest threat to people and businesses, but in reality the insider threat is a far greater risk.  It has been reported that more than two-thirds of incidents involving theft or crimes have been caused by insiders.  The types of insider threats that we want to look at are related to criminal activity.  There four types that we want you to be aware of in your everyday life and they are:


Criminal Intended to Coerce or Intimidate: Persons who plot and execute crimes or attacks to further the agenda of an extreme ideology.


Mental Instability: Persons that have a mental illness that impairs their judgment.


Espionage: The divulgence of classified or sensitive information that may result in attacks or provide information on vulnerabilities that facilitate an attack or crime.  Motivations may be financial or ideological.


Negligence: The disregard for standard security measures that potentially allow the collection of vulnerability-related information or information that could precipitate an attack or crime.


There are many indicators that you can look for to help you identify each potential type of insider threat.  The following indicators will help you key in on individuals intended to coerce or to intimidate:


1.Anti-American statements asserting that US policy and authority are illegitimate.

2.Aggression or threats toward coworkers.

3.Presence of unauthorized weapons.

4.Attempts to communicate with US enemies.

5.Associations with known criminal groups.

6.Distribution of propaganda materials in support of an extremist position.

7.Unfounded allegations of US persecution or prejudice against a minority group or religion.

8.Repeated violation of policies.


Indicators of a potentially mentally unstable person may include:


1.Abnormal mood swings or depression, withdrawn behavior, decrease in hygiene, and paranoia.

2.Flashbacks to prior traumatic events.

3.Abuse of alcohol or drugs.

4.Repeated violation of policies.

5.Talk of domestic or financial problems.

6.Talk of suicide.

7.Intense anxiety in social situations.


Indicators of corporate espionage may include:


1.Extensive use of copy, facsimile, or computer equipment to reproduce or transmit classified, sensitive, or proprietary material, which may exceed job requirements.

2,Asking others to obtain or facilitate access to classified or sensitive information to which one does not have authorized access.

3.Undue curiosity or requests for information about matters not within the scope of the individual’s job or need-to-know.

4.Talk of domestic or financial problems.

5.Intense anxiety in social situations.

6.Working odd hours when others are not in the office without a logical reason, or visiting work areas after normal hours for no logical reason


Indicators of negligence may include:


1.Bringing cameras or recording devices, without approval, on to facilities or into areas storing classified or other protected material.

2.Unauthorized removal or attempts to remove classified, export-controlled, proprietary or other protected material from the work area.


Consider carefully what access you want members of your group to have.  You should approach this on a “need to know” basis.  Not all group members need to understand the details of all of your security measures.  Insiders have access to more critical information, understand how the company or organization works, and can bypass security more easily than an outsider can.  The insider is therefore in the best position to cause harm.  This is where you come in, by being aware of your surroundings you can help identify the insider threat and help prevent a crime, attack, or loss of data.  If you perceive an immediate violent threat, alert security or law enforcement personnel immediately.  If you witness behavior that might indicate an unstable person, alert your supervisor or appropriate medical personnel immediately.  This is how you can keep your workplace safe and secure.


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