Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Attacks/Breaches

'Security Fatigue' Could Put Business at Risk

The relentless march of security breaches may cause some individuals to drop their guard, but there's more to the story than that.

When the news is filled with stories of one disaster after another, responders talk about "compassion fatigue" to explain why people seem to care less about the loss with each succeeding event. So, with stories of data breaches affecting millions of records in the news, is it possible for consumers and employees to suffer "security fatigue" in ways that have an impact on their behavior?

Gary Davis, McAfee’s chief consumer security evangelist, says security fatigue may be responsible for some behavior, but it's not a complete explanation. "I read a report that talked about 'optimism bias.' People always tend to believe it's not going to happen to them — it will happen to their neighbor, so they don't have to be very proactive," Davis says. "It's the case of 'it's not going to happen to me' versus 'there's too much going on.'"

One of the factors contributing to a lack of urgency is ignorance about just how much pain is involved when an identity is stolen, Davis suggests. "I don't think people truly grasp just how painful it is to unwind something that's pretty far gone down a path. That's what people need to think about when they're thinking about protecting their identities," he explains.

Given the individual lack of action, organizations may have to step up their efforts to protect their customers and employees, Davis says. "With things like GDPR, there will be a more concerted effort for businesses to be more mindful," he says.

But the impetus to protect individual personal data is not simply regulation-driven. As the traditional network perimeter has dissolved, it's become more important for organizations to extend their technology and expertise to employee, partner, and customer devices in order to protect corporate assets. "We need a much stronger sense of collaboration and education for what you need to be doing to make sure you don't put yourself or your company at risk," Davis says.

What suggestions should the enterprise be making to customers and employees to help them keep both their own and enterprise data safe? Davis has a list of "bare minimum" steps he thinks every organization should suggest:

  • Apply patches and updates to the router, PC, and connected devices. If individuals do that, then they're doing something well.
  • Stay informed and educated. Phishing is a good example. There are simple things an individual can do to see whether a message or website is phishing.
  • Have active antivirus on the smartphone and PC.
  • Use freely available website reputation tools. They'll block access to a known-bad website.
  • Use a password manager. This could lead to both stronger passwords and the end of credential cascades in which a threat actor gets one password and gains access to dozens of websites.

Related Content:

 

 

Black Hat Europe returns to London Dec 3-6 2018  with hands-on technical Trainings, cutting-edge Briefings, Arsenal open-source tool demonstrations, top-tier security solutions and service providers in the Business Hall. Click for information on the conference and to register.

Curtis Franklin Jr. is Senior Editor at Dark Reading. In this role he focuses on product and technology coverage for the publication. In addition he works on audio and video programming for Dark Reading and contributes to activities at Interop ITX, Black Hat, INsecurity, and ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
7 Tips for Infosec Pros Considering A Lateral Career Move
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  1/21/2020
For Mismanaged SOCs, The Price Is Not Right
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  1/22/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
IT 2020: A Look Ahead
Are you ready for the critical changes that will occur in 2020? We've compiled editor insights from the best of our network (Dark Reading, Data Center Knowledge, InformationWeek, ITPro Today and Network Computing) to deliver to you a look at the trends, technologies, and threats that are emerging in the coming year. Download it today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
How Enterprises are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
Organizations have invested in a sweeping array of security technologies to address challenges associated with the growing number of cybersecurity attacks. However, the complexity involved in managing these technologies is emerging as a major problem. Read this report to find out what your peers biggest security challenges are and the technologies they are using to address them.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-16029
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
A vulnerability in the application programming interface (API) of Cisco Smart Software Manager On-Prem could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to change user account information which can prevent users from logging in, resulting in a denial of service (DoS) condition of the web interface. Th...
CVE-2020-3115
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
A vulnerability in the CLI of the Cisco SD-WAN Solution vManage software could allow an authenticated, local attacker to elevate privileges to root-level privileges on the underlying operating system. The vulnerability is due to insufficient input validation. An attacker could exploit this vulnerabi...
CVE-2020-3121
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
A vulnerability in the web-based management interface of Cisco Small Business Smart and Managed Switches could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to conduct a cross-site scripting (XSS) attack against a user of the interface. The vulnerability is due to insufficient validation of user-supplie...
CVE-2020-3129
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
A vulnerability in the web-based management interface of Cisco Unity Connection Software could allow an authenticated, remote attacker to perform a stored cross-site scripting (XSS) attack. The vulnerability is due to insufficient input validation by the web-based management interface. An attacker c...
CVE-2020-3131
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
[CVE-2020-3131_su] A vulnerability in the Cisco Webex Teams client for Windows could allow an authenticated, remote attacker to cause the client to crash, resulting in a denial of service (DoS) condition. The attacker needs a valid developer account to exploit this vulnerability. The vulnerability i...