Verizon recently released its 2010 Data Breach Investigations report, which found insider threats and social engineering are among the largest issues facing data protection in the last year. The United States Secret Service participated in the analysis and believes collaboration with businesses, law enforcement and the government will help prevent data loss.
The report found the best method of data loss prevention is preparation, as cyber criminals regularly develop new ways of compromising corporate networks. Furthermore, a small yet disconcerting portion of attacks comes from internal sources. While most – 69 percent – originate outside of the company, 49 percent of the attacks start with people inside the company. The figure represents a substantial increase from previous studies, but Verizon reports changes to the study itself are most likely responsible for the deviation.
Another growing trend is people misusing power to access information they should not disclose. Forty-eight percent of breaches were conducted by people capable of using internal information against their company.
Data breaches can be quite expensive for companies, especially those who regularly experience compromises of any kind. The Ponemon Institute recently reported the 45 American companies it studied experienced between $1 and $53 million in losses related to data loss.