Data Embezzlement: What You Need to Know

Cybersecurity incidents happen all the time. In most instances, a hacker isn't looking to affect your business specifically but is rather casting a wide net in hopes of ensnaring any and every victim they can. To avoid being one of them, the simple solution is becoming a difficult target. If your network is too much trouble to hack, the cyber crook will move on to easier prey.

However, this is not the case with nefarious insiders. Like it or not, some hackers are embedded within your company. This presents a big challenge to businesses everywhere. How do you root out one of these insiders? What are the risks of data embezzlement? And is there anything you can do to stymie this trend?

Thankfully, cyber risk insurance coverage from CyberPolicy helps companies overcome all sorts of cyberattacks and data breaches. We've got you covered whether the threat is from outside your network or lurking in the break room.

The Bad Boys Are Back in Town

According to CNBC, employee theft (which includes data theft) cost U.S. businesses $50 billion annually. Healthcare organizations are especially vulnerable to this trend. Flowers Hospital in Alabama suffered a class-action lawsuit after an employee allegedly sold patient information to an anonymous cybercriminal. As you can see, the staff member need not be a hacker themselves to negatively impact your company.

So, why did the aforementioned employee engage in this kind of illegal behavior? One possible reason is the worker believed he or she was being underpaid. Selling stolen information on the side was just a quick way to make some extra cash.

This isn't the only justification, of course. Sometimes insiders steal information in order to curry favor with a competitor. Other times it's to resell on the dark web. And sometimes it's a complete accident.

But whatever the case may be, it's a major threat to your company, your customers, and your reputation. Here are a few ways to prevent data embezzlement:

  • Have employees sign a non-disclosure agreement. While an NDA is typically boilerplate, it never hurts to include a separate page specifically dedicated to the issue of data embezzlement. This will impress upon new employees the importance of protecting data from prying eyes and hands.
  • Discuss data embezzlement during company training sessions. Routine training sessions work wonders for cybersecurity awareness within the workplace. Visiting and revisiting data breach topics, including theft, will help keep your words of warning top of mind.
  • Reclaim devices from terminated employees. Firing a co-worker is never pleasant. Done the wrong way, it could instigate an unpleasant result; even behind the scenes. Protect your data by reclaiming any business devices and eliminating access to all corporate accounts.

Still, the best thing you can do for your company is invest in cyber risk insurance from a trusted provider. If an ex-employee spills your secrets on the dark web, your policy will cover you. If you suffer a class-action lawsuit, your policy will cover you. If a co-worker sells private information to a competitor or hacker, your policy will cover you.

For more information on different cyber risk insurance policies, visit CyberPolicy!

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