The majority of data breaches result from inadvertent employee error, say experts. BBC News reports on the results of a study that found unintentional data loss to be the most frequent cause of cyber breaches (14.4 percent per year). IDC and the security firm RSA analyzed 11 categories of risk at 400 organizations in various industry sectors across the U.S., UK, France and Germany. Of the employee-caused breaches, they found 52 percent to be accidental and 19 percent deliberate. Temporary employees, the study found, are more likely to be culpable. "It's likely contractors may be less well-trained in organizational policy..." said RSA's Chris Young.
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This survey, one of dozens within the past two years, illustrates my point about employee training as perhaps the most critical aspect of any good breach plan. That 52% of accidental breaches can be greatly diminished by showing employees what is expected of them and seeking their help in improving data security throughout the enterprise. A clear written policy that not only delineates the information that is to be protected, but also provides guidelines for staff and names those who are administering the program is essential in our modern business world. As long as personal identifiable information has value it will be used and sold by illegal profiteers around the world.