Productive SecurityPosted: June 15, 2014
Let’s see how some security controls might affect human behaviour in a company.
- Restricting software installation on computers is in line with one of the main principles of information security – the principle of least privilege. That way a security manager can make sure that employees in his company don’t install unnecessary programs which may contain vulnerabilities. Such vulnerabilities can be exploited by a potential attacker. There are instances, however, when a user may require a piece of software to perform his productive tasks. Failure to install it quickly and easily may result in unnecessary delays.
- Restricting access to file sharing websites helps to make sure that a company is not in violation of the data privacy regulation and users don’t store sensitive information in the insecure locations. However, it is important for a company to provide an easy-to-use, secure alternative to enable the business.
- Restricting access to CD/DVD and USB flash drives. Personal USB flash drives can be a source of malware which users can introduce to the corporate network. Restricting access to CD/DVD and USB flash drives not only helps to prevent this threat, but also limits the possibility of sensitive data leaks. It is important to understand the core business processes in a company to make a decision on restricting the access. Sometimes drawbacks of such a policy may overshadow all possible benefits.
- Regular full antivirus checks help to make sure that employees’ workstations are free from malware. However, the process of scanning a computer for viruses may take up a lot of resources and slow down the machine with the possible impact on productivity,
- Awareness training can be a powerful measure to protect against a wide range of security threats, including social engineering (e.g. phishing). However, research shows that blanket awareness campaigns are ineffective and a better approach is needed to address this issue.
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