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4 Common WaysBusinesses Lose Data

The bad news is that the ways enterprises lose intellectual property are so numerous it’s hard to pick out just a few.

The good news?  Well, employees are responsible for a huge percentage (probably a majority, most experts believe) of this data loss.  So if you’re on your game, you can do quite a bit to plug the leaks.

1. Poor password practices.  Sure, you’ve heard it before.  But workers keep creating weak passwords, so we’ll keep reminding you.  Passwords should be long; unique to a given account; and never, ever shared or written down.

2. Lost or stolen hardware.  Laptops, phones, and tablets go missing at a ridiculous rate.  And when they do, chances are they have intellectual property that could be of use to a competitor or even a hostile nation-state.  That’s why you should password-protect your devices, and keep a careful eye on them when traveling.

3. Loose lips at confabs.  When employees attend industry or academic conferences, they often drop their guard because it’s so relaxing to be among their peers.  This is a mistake, and espionage artists know it!  When you attend such conferences, keep in mind that those “peers” you’re comparing notes with may actually be spies.

4. Spearphishing/BEC attacks.  Business Email Compromise attacks, which are essentially the same thing as targeted email campaigns, have become big business, responsible for many of the worst data breaches of the past several years.  Remember, you don’t have to be a corporate officer to be targeted by phishers; what they’re after is your network logon and password.  Now more than ever, it’s important to be leery of requests for this info.

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