Whether you call Edward Snowden a traitor or a whistle-blower, he earned one label about which there’s no debate: insider threat.
Bloomberg News reports that guarding against such risks is an expanding niche in the security industry, with at least 20 companies marketing software tools for tracking and analysing employee behaviour.
'The bad guys helped us', says Idan Tendler, the founder and chief executive officer of Fortscale Security in San Francisco. 'It started with Snowden, and people said, ‘Wow, if that happened in the NSA, it could happen to us.''
The problem predates the Internet: the salesman who takes the entire customer list with him when he quits, or the engineer who makes off with key product designs. But technology has only made it easier; now the salesman e-mails the data to his Gmail account, and the engineer can put product designs on a USB drive. In an embarrassing episode for Morgan Stanley, the bank dismissed an employee earlier this year for allegedly taking information about an estimated 350,000 clients of its wealth-management division.
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