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Best Practices to Prevent Insider Threats

Danny Murphy | 7 min read| Updated On - April 12, 2024

Prevent Insider Threats

While many businesses trust their employees, we must remember that we are frequently betrayed by those we most trust. If your business has not yet implemented an insider threat prevention plan, we can assist you in understanding what it implies and other best practices for preventing insider threats.

What are Insider Threats?

An insider threat is an employee, former employee, contractor, business associate, or other individual within a company who has access to essential data and IT systems and can harm the firm.

Types of Insider Threats

There are many types of insider threats, below are the four most common types:

  • Malicious insiders are individuals who intentionally misuse their authorized access to systems and data for personal gain or to harm the organization. They may steal sensitive information, sabotage systems, commit fraud, or engage in other malicious activities.
  • Negligent insiders pose a threat unintentionally due to carelessness or lack of awareness about security practices. They may accidentally disclose sensitive information, fall victim to social engineering attacks, or fail to follow security policies and procedures.
  • Disgruntled Employees unhappy with their job, treatment, or organization may become insider threats. They might seek revenge by leaking sensitive information, disrupting operations, or causing damage to systems or data.
  • Third-party insiders such as Contractors, vendors, or partners with access to an organization’s systems and data can also pose insider threats. If their security practices are not up to par or have malicious intent, they can misuse their access to compromise the organization’s security.

Top 10 Best Practices of Insider Threat Prevention

1. Establish a strong security culture

Fostering a strong security culture within your organization is crucial. This involves promoting security awareness and training programs for employees at all levels. Educate them about the risks associated with insider threats and the importance of following security policies and procedures. Encourage a mindset of vigilance and responsible data handling.

2. Implement a comprehensive security policy

Develop and enforce a clear and concise security policy that defines the acceptable use of company resources, data handling practices, access controls, and consequences for policy violations. Regularly communicate and reinforce the policy to all employees. Ensure that the policy is accessible and easily understandable.

3. Apply the principle of least privilege (PoLP)

The principle of least privilege (PoLP) grants employees the least access necessary to perform their duties. Limit access rights to sensitive information and systems based on job roles and responsibilities. Regularly review and update access privileges as needed to ensure that all employees have access only to what is required for their work.

4. Conduct thorough background checks

Before hiring, perform comprehensive background checks on all employees, especially for positions that handle sensitive information or access to critical systems. This includes verifying employment history, checking references, and conducting criminal background checks where applicable. Background checks help identify potential risks early on.

5. Monitor and audit system activity

Implement monitoring tools and processes to track user activities, including system log analysis, intrusion detection systems, and user behavior analytics. Regularly review logs and audit trails for suspicious activities or anomalies that could indicate potential insider threats. Monitoring enables timely detection and response.

6. Enforce strong password and authentication practices

Employees use strong, unique passwords and implement multi-factor authentication (MFA) for accessing sensitive systems and data. Regularly enforce password changes and educate employees on creating secure passwords. MFA gives an extra layer of security by requesting additional verification beyond passwords.

7. Encourage reporting of suspicious behavior

Establish a mechanism for employees to report suspicious activities or concerns regarding potential insider threats. Encourage an environment of trust and provide a confidential reporting channel to address such issues—incidents without fear of retaliation.

8. Regularly review and update security controls

Continuously evaluate and update security controls, including access controls, data loss prevention systems, and security patches. Stay informed about the latest security threats and vulnerabilities to address them proactively. Conduct regular security assessments and risk evaluations to identify weaknesses and improve security measures.

9. Perform periodic security awareness training

Regularly conduct security awareness training sessions to educate employees about insider threats, social engineering tactics, phishing attacks, and other common security risks. Teach employees how to identify and report potential threats and provide them with practical guidance on secure data handling practices.

10. Protect sensitive data

Implement data protection measures such as encrypting sensitive data at rest and in transit. Deploy data loss prevention (DLP) solutions to prevent unauthorized disclosure or exfiltration of sensitive information. Implement strong access controls and regular data backups to protect against insider threats.

How Lepide Helps in Preventing Insider Threats

Lepide Data Security Platform enables organizations to prevent insider threats and enhance their overall security posture. Lepide does this by monitoring user activity, detecting anomalies, and providing robust auditing and reporting capabilities. Here’s how Lepide Data Security Platform can help in preventing insider threats:

User Behavior Analytics (UBA)

Lepide Data Security Platform incorporates UBA technology to analyze user behavior patterns and detect anomalies that may indicate insider threats. By establishing baseline behavior and continuously monitoring user activities, Lepide can identify suspicious actions, such as unauthorized access attempts, data exfiltration, or abnormal file activities.

Data Loss Prevention (DLP)

Lepide enables organizations to prevent the unauthorized disclosure or exfiltration of sensitive data. The Data Security Platform allows organizations to define rules and policies to monitor and control the movement of sensitive information across their IT environment. This helps mitigate the risk of insider threats leaking or mishandling critical data.

Real-time Monitoring and Alerts

Lepide enables real-time monitoring of user activities, file accesses, and system events. Any suspicious or unauthorized activities trigger alerts and notifications, allowing security teams to respond promptly to potential insider threats. This proactive approach helps in identifying and mitigating risks before they escalate.

Auditing and Reporting

Lepide offers robust auditing and reporting capabilities to track and document user actions within an organization’s IT infrastructure. It provides detailed reports on user access, file modifications, privilege escalations, and other critical events. These audit logs and reports assist in compliance requirements, forensic investigations, and identifying insider threats.

Privileged Access Management (PAM)

The Lepide Data Security Platform include features for managing and monitoring privileged accounts. It provides visibility into privileged user activities, including session recordings, to prevent misuse or unauthorized access to critical systems and data. This helps organizations limit the potential damage caused by insider threats with elevated privileges.

Insider Threat Intelligence

Lepide offers insights and intelligence about insider threats, helping organizations understand trends, patterns, and potential risk factors associated with user activities. By leveraging this intelligence, organizations can proactively identify and address insider threat issues before they cause significant harm.

Compliance and Policy Enforcement

Lepide Data Security Platform helps organizations ensure compliance with industry regulations and internal policies. This is done through automated monitoring, reporting, and alerting capabilities to meet various compliance requirements, including GDPR, HIPAA, PCI DSS, etc. By enforcing policies and detecting policy violations, Lepide helps mitigate insider threat risks.


Insider Threats are risks posed by individuals with authorized access to an organization’s systems and data. Best practices for prevention include establishing a security culture, applying the principle of least privilege, monitoring, and auditing activities, enforcing strong authentication, and fostering a positive work environment.

The Lepide Data Security Platform offers user behavior analytics, data loss prevention, real-time monitoring, auditing, privileged access management, and insider threat intelligence to help prevent insider threats. However, a comprehensive security strategy, including employee training and multiple security measures, is necessary to mitigate these risks effectively.

Danny Murphy
Danny Murphy

Danny brings over 10 years’ experience in the IT industry to our Leadership team. With award winning success in leading global Pre-Sales and Support teams, coupled with his knowledge and enthusiasm for IT Security solutions, he is here to ensure we deliver market leading products and support to our extensively growing customer base

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