Identity Theft Essay

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Insiders: The Greatest Threat to the Protection of Information Data theft is a growing problem, one that could cause serious damage to an organization such as the government, a Private Corporation, or to an everyday citizen. The damage caused by data theft can be considerable with today's ability to transmit very large files via e-mail, web pages, USB devices, DVD storage and other hand-held devices. Removable media devices are getting smaller with increased hard drive capacity, and activities such as pod slurping are becoming more and more common. It is now possible to store 80 GB of data on a device that will fit in an employee's pocket, data that could contribute to the downfall of a corporation. The data security plans of many organizations are largely focused on technical measures to guard against efforts by outsiders to gain unauthorized access to the organization's networks, computers and data. However, data theft is primarily perpetrated by what I believe to be the greatest threat to protected information: Insiders, internal theft committed by employees - disgruntled current or former employees, or contractors. Employees have access to technology such as desktop computers and hand-held devices capable of storing digital information such as flash drives, iPods and even digital cameras. Since employees often spend a considerable amount of time developing contacts, confidential and copyrighted information or have confidential information disclosed to them, they often feel they have some right to the information and are inclined to copy or misuse the information during time of employment or subsequent to termination of employment. On July 17, 2008, Gerald Lee Eastman, a former disgruntled employee of Boeing was charged with 16 counts of computer trespass for allegedly stealing more than 320,000 company files over the course of more than two years.

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