In the present-day business ecosystem, organisational security, compliance, and performance are pivotal aspects that warrant consistent attention. Among these, the monitoring of employee behaviour and the analysis of corresponding data are increasingly becoming significant areas of focus. Most organisations already have existing log sources that contain abundant information to provide visibility into non-compliant staff behaviour. This article elaborates on the importance of utilising these logs effectively and integrating employee monitoring capabilities with existing systems.

Understanding Existing Resources

Many organisations are flooded with log sources but often do nothing with them. These logs can be an invaluable source of information regarding employee behaviour, potential fraud, data leakage, and other non-compliant activities. The challenge lies in recognising the potential of these logs and integrating them into a structured and meaningful monitoring framework.

The Danger of Late Action

The underuse of activity logs is a common problem faced by many organisations. Often, logs are used to map malicious actions by staff after the fact, which turns out to be quite pointless. This retrospective analysis does not help in preventing the damage but rather functions as a post-mortem investigation. Thus, a proactive approach is necessary to harness the full potential of the data at hand.

Utilising Logs Efficiently

Interestingly, it is often possible to adequately monitor staff using only a fraction of the logs collected by organisations. This reinforces the importance of understanding the nature of the insider risk and assessing what activity should be monitored.

A well-thought-out strategy begins with assessing the risk associated with insiders. Risks may be related to fraud, data leakage, or other non-compliant behaviour. Identifying these risks helps in defining what logs are essential and how they should be used, eliminating the wastage of resources in collecting and storing unnecessary data.

Insider Risk: A Business Responsibility

The task of managing insider risk is not merely an IT problem but a comprehensive business responsibility. It is an area that involves all departments, making it crucial to integrate them into an insider risk program. Every segment of the organisation, from human resources to operations, should be aligned with this program.

The Challenge of Proper Monitoring

Often, it is almost impossible for internal security teams to properly monitor insider risk programs. The complexity of the task, the diversity of data sources, and the continuous evolution of risks makes it a specialised area.

Many businesses also turn to managed service providers for this task, but they are not always the right organisations to manage insider risk programs. A specialised insider risk platform is often required, utilising experts who understand insider risk intricately.

The Need for Specialised Insider Risk Platforms

The critical aspect of managing insider risk lies in employing specialised insider risk platforms that are utilised and resourced by professionals who understand the nuances of insider risk. These platforms offer tailored solutions that not only integrate existing log sources but also provide actionable insights.

The Last Consideration: New Endpoint Agents

One of the last considerations in this process should be to implement new endpoint agents that collect information on staff behaviour. While these tools can be beneficial, they should not replace or overshadow the utilisation of existing logs and the integration of a comprehensive monitoring system.

In Summary

The complexity of managing insider risk requires a well-strategised approach that goes beyond mere data collection. Organisations must leverage existing log sources to their fullest potential and integrate them into a system that involves all departments. The mere collection of data, without proper analysis and actionable insights, leads to ineffective monitoring and possible failures in risk management. In a time where data breaches and insider threats are rampant, organisations should consider moving away from the traditional methods of post-event analysis and aim for a proactive and specialised approach. The focus should be on utilising existing resources efficiently, integrating all departments into a comprehensive insider risk program, and employing specialised insider risk platforms. Doing so will not only streamline the process but also contribute significantly to the overall security and compliance of the organisation.

Christopher McNaughton

Strategic Advisor, ShadowSight

Who is Christopher McNaughton

Chris is a proficient problem solver with a strategic aptitude for anticipating and addressing potential business issues, particularly in areas such as Insider Threat, Data Governance, Digital Forensics, Workplace Investigations, and Cyber Security. He thrives on turning intricate challenges into opportunities for increased efficiency, offering pragmatic solutions derived from a practical and realistic approach.

Starting his career as a law enforcement Detective, Chris transitioned to multinational organisations where he specialised and excelled in Cyber Security, proving his authority in the field. Even under demanding circumstances, his commitment to delivering exceptional results remains unwavering, underpinned by his extraordinary ability to understand both cyber and business problems swiftly, along with a deep emphasis on active listening.

What is ShadowSight

ShadowSight is an innovative insider risk staff monitoring tool that proactively guards your business against internal threats and safeguards vital data from unauthorised access and malicious activities. We offer a seamless integration with your current systems, boosting regulatory compliance while providing unparalleled visibility into non-compliant activities to reinforce a secure digital environment. By prioritising actionable intelligence, ShadowSight not only mitigates insider threats but also fosters a culture of proactive risk management, significantly simplifying your compliance process without the overwhelming burden of false positives.