Sysadmins Say Greatest Network Security Threat is Stupid Users

Paul Lilly

Forget about sophisticated attacks and increasingly complex malware schemes, the biggest threat to a company's security might be social networks and the employees who use them.

So says security firm Sophos, who reports that 63 percent of sysadmins worry about employees sharing too much information on Facebook, MySpace, and other social networking portals, ultimately putting their corporate infrastructure -- and the sensitive date on it -- at risk.

"Evidence shows that their worry is justified," Sophos wrote in the July 2009 update to its Security Threat Report. "In June 2009, the personal information belonging to the incoming head of MI6 was exposed to the entire Facebook network, when his spouse allowed members of the 'London' network to view her profile."

Sophos listed several other examples to back the claim, including a MySpace user losing over $210,000 in an email scam after his "Nigerian cyber-pal started asking for money to help her ailing mother."

But Sophos was quick to warn that completely denying access to social networking sites isn't the answer. Doing so runs the risk of driving employees to find a way around the ban, creating an even bigger risk and less oversight by the IT staff.

Image Credit: Sophos

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