Is Hacking an Inside Job?

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Hacking is a nightmare for system administrators, security experts, website and business owners. It is a sneaky tactic employed by many unscrupulous individuals to get into another person’s computer without permission. This technique is often used to steal information, spy on someone else’s activities or just launch a malicious attack. However, with the type of security software people have these days, illegal and unwelcome intrusion remains a problem. This leads one to wonder, ‘Is hacking an inside job?

Is Hacking an Inside Job?

Do you think most computer hacking an inside job? Tell us what you think in the comments.

When insiders go bad

From experience, many unscrupulous programmers and those looking for some adventurous albeit troublesome surfing find hacking a forbidden fruit too delicious to refuse. Not only does it offer plenty of self-satisfaction on the part of the hacker, it also opens numerous doors of opportunity. Hacking, after all, is the popular route criminals take to perform criminal activities. Still, with each new threat that rears its ugly head, computer security companies also find new ways to battle each one. So how do hackers cope?

[Read also: How To Prevent Cell Phone Hacking]

Hacking as an inside job seems to be a no-brainer. After all, how else can a well-protected computer system be infiltrated when there are security measures in place? An insider has better access to a network computer that will readily connect to the heart of a system which is its most vulnerable part. Insiders also tend to be privy to sensitive information including passwords, key passes, co-employees’ computing habits, system vulnerabilities, etc. When it is so easy to do something illegal and there is a good chance you can get away with it, why not do it?

Why turn traitor?

There are many reasons why hacking is an insider job, at least, most of the time. According to Diligence Information Security, an estimated 70% of attempts at security breaches made in corporate settings can be traced to employees. There are reasons why this is so.

Hacking from the inside is relatively easy, or at least easy enough for even an unsophisticated hacker to perform. The simplest hacks often require only physical access to a computer or a network, knowledge of a password and certain processes in order to carry out. In a way, hacking as an inside job is akin to going for the path of least resistance – it is easier than trying to break in from the outside.

[Read also: Sites Where You Are Most Likely to Get Hacked]

Another reason why insider hacking is attractive is that it is potentially lucrative. Employees, consultants and suppliers are frequently targeted to infiltrate their company’s network or system in exchange for pay. This is commonly referred to as industrial or corporate espionage and it can affect companies from different industries such as pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, production or finance, among others.

Insider hacking can also happen when there is malicious intent, either coming from people who want to misuse their access and authority or those who want cause trouble due to a grudge. An employee who was just let go, for example, or someone who may not have received the attention or recognition he thinks he deserved could be the person who will be holding very strong ill feelings against his employer. If he has access or is capable of finding a way to get into the system to wreck havoc, he probably will.

Protecting yourself from an inside job

There really is no bulletproof way to completely protect a network or system from a hacking attempt. However, implementing a sound policy, installing security software and educating employees and users regarding the safe use of computers can help minimize these threats and even make it more difficult for hackers to perform a breach.

[Read more: I’ve Been Hacked! 5 Things to do]

Do you think companies face a bigger threat to their networks from their own employees than from hackers? Tell us in the comments.

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