Feeds

People are the biggest security risk

Send your workers to security bootcamps today!

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Human error - not technical malfunction - is the most significant cause of IT security breaches in the public and private sectors.

That's according to a survey by trade group the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), published yesterday, which calls on a greater emphasis on educating employees about security risks.

In over 63 per cent of identified security breaches, human error was identified as a major, underlying factor, CompTIA's survey found.

Brian McCarthy, CompTIA's COO, described it work in uncovering a link between poorly trained workers and security problems as "pretty staggering".

"Frankly, we're surprised no one's picked up on this before," he said. "The connection between having more IT security training and making our IT networks more secure seems so obvious, yet it's been largely overlooked.

"It's just common sense," he added.

Brian, you took the words right out of our mouth. One point we'd make is that you need to deliver the appropriate training to the right people for real benefits to accrue.

But you knew that already.

Anyway, CompTIA's view on the importance of training in improving security is backed up by various notables in government, including Andy Purdy, White House Cyberspace staff member.

The CompTIA-commissioned study, conducted by NFO Prognostics, surveyed 638 respondents from the public and private sectors. Among other things, the survey assessed security breach frequency and common causes, security resources, responsibility and enforcement practices, investment in security and certification, and steps taken in response to government regulatory and legislative mandates.

The survey found:

  • 31 per cent of respondents had experienced from one-to-three "major security breaches" - ie, that caused real harm, resulted in confidential information taken, or interrupted business - in the last six months.

  • 66 per cent believe that staff training/certification has improved their IT security, primarily through increased awareness, as well as through proactive risk identification.

  • 22 per cent said none of their IT employees have received security-related training; 69 per cent have fewer than 25 per cent of their IT staff were security-trained; and only 11 per cent said that all of their IT employees have received security training.

  • 59 per cent said that government security regulations are largely inappropriate, failing to adequately address the practical side of the problem.


So technology, while it has a role, isn't a panacea for security ills. Training is important. Human cock-ups are rife. And government legislation isn't an effective means to improve security, most believe.

That just about covers it... ®

Related Links

Committing to Security: A CompTIA Analysis of IT Security and the Workforce

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Webcam hacker pervs in MASS HOME INVASION
You thought you were all alone? Nope – change your password, says ICO
You really need to do some tech support for Aunty Agnes
Free anti-virus software, expires, stops updating and p0wns the world
Meet OneRNG: a fully-open entropy generator for a paranoid age
Kiwis to seek random investors for crowd-funded randomiser
USB coding anarchy: Consider all sticks licked
Thumb drive design ruled by almighty buck
Attack reveals 81 percent of Tor users but admins call for calm
Cisco Netflow a handy tool for cheapskate attackers
Privacy bods offer GOV SPY VICTIMS a FREE SPYWARE SNIFFER
Looks for gov malware that evades most antivirus
Patch NOW! Microsoft slings emergency bug fix at Windows admins
Vulnerability promotes lusers to domain overlords ... oops
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Getting ahead of the compliance curve
Learn about new services that make it easy to discover and manage certificates across the enterprise and how to get ahead of the compliance curve.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.