One in three IT workers snoop through confidental data

One in three IT workers has admitted misusing access privileges to examine confidential employee data, according to a survey of 200 IT professionals by Cyber-Ark Software.

They confessed to using administrator passwords to anonymously browse private files, wage data, personal emails and HR background information, with another third predicting they would still be able to access this information if they left their current job. Half even admitted storing such critical passwords on Post-It notes.

In fact, 25% of respondents knew of another staff member who still had access to sensitive networks despite having left the company.

Cyber-Ark European director Calum MacLeod says he was surprised at how endemic the problem was.

“Gone are the days when you had to break into the filing cabinet in the personnel department to get at vital and highly confidential information,” he says. “Now all you need to have is the administrative password and you can snoop around most places, and it appears that is exactly what’s happening. Companies need to wake up to the fact that if they don’t introduce layers of security, tighten up who has access to vital information, and manage and control privileged passwords, then snooping, sabotage and hacking will continue to be rife.”

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