Most ex-IT admins would steal data

A survey from an ID security company claims that the majority of IT administrators would steal company data if they were laid off.

An astonishing 88 per cent of IT administrators would steal valuable and sensitive information if they were laid off, according to a survey from ID security specialist Cyber-Ark.

The research - which focused on trust, security and passwords' and surveyed 300 IT professionals - also showed that a third of IT admins would take the privileged password list with them, giving them access to financial reports, accounts and salaries.

Furthermore, without passwords, IT administrators would also have easy access to private information like customer database records in addition to research and development plans.

Udi Mokady, co-founder and chief executive of Cyber-Ark, said that company directors were usually unaware of the information that IT could view as a result of their easy password access.

"These privileged identities, which lie on hundreds of servers and applications, very rarely get changed as it is too much hassle," he said.

"When people leave the organisation they can often still access the network using these passwords to acquire an organisation's most sensitive information."

Mokady warned that companies needed to secure, change and manage the most privileged data in order to avoid the problem of disgruntled ex-employees stealing and using private data.

The survey is especially timely considering recent data losses such as prisoner information being lost on a USB key and a computer being found with nearly a million financial records.

The research also highlighted major failures when it comes to IT security, with 35 per cent of IT administrators sending confidential information via email. A third of companies also said that they believe that industrial espionage and data leakage is rife.

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