• 3 Low-Tech Threats that Lead to High-Profile Breaches

    Dr. Larry Ponemon
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    • Picture of Larry Ponemon

      As data security defenses become more sophisticated, malicious parties shift from hacking systems to hacking people. Often, the tactics they use are stealthy and difficult to trace. Larry Ponemon writes for CIO Online about low-tech threats that lead to high-profile breaches by visual hackers, insiders, and social engineers. He also recommends solutions for helping to prevent hacks and raising awareness within an organization.

      A visual hacker may enter an office under the guise of being a vendor or building worker to visually capture confidential and private information from computer screens and employee workspaces. Due to a lack of awareness for visual privacy, a careless employee may be leaking data from personal or company-issued devices without even knowing it. Disgruntled employees may be persuaded to assist outside attacks from the inside. Social engineering is a technique that exploits human psychology. After studying the company in advance, a social engineer may pose as a vendor or an IT team member and call or email employs to gain confidential information like passwords and email addresses.

      When it comes to visual hacking, one piece of valuable information can help a hacker launch a cyber attack and unlock a large-scale data breach. In order to emphasize the value of visual privacy, Ponemon says it might be necessary to change workplace culture. Policies can be put in place to address protecting both device screens and physical documents from being visually hacked.

      Continued education around the topic of visual privacy combined with equipping employees with the right tools, like privacy filters such as the 3M™ Privacy Filter or software such as 3M™ ePrivacy Filter Software will encourage awareness and help ensure visual privacy best practices are met.