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Imperva Insider Threats Study Finds More Than Half of IT Security Professionals Are Concerned About Careless Users Putting Data at Risk

Imperva, Inc. (NASDAQ: IMPV), committed to protecting business-critical data and applications in the cloud and on-premises, today announced the results of a survey of 310 IT security professionals taken at the Infosecurity Europe trade show. The survey found that when it comes to insider threats, over half (58 percent) of the IT security professionals were deeply concerned not primarily about malicious users, but about careless users who unwittingly put their organization’s data at risk.

Forty-seven percent of the security professionals surveyed confessed to being “very worried” about insider threats. In addition, 14 percent of respondents revealed they do not have a security solution in place to detect insider threats.

“As we’ve seen in past high-profile cases, data breaches caused by careless, malicious or compromised insiders are real and serious,” said Terry Ray, CTO at Imperva. “Because the problem begins with users that have legitimate access to enterprise data, attacks from the inside can be present for long periods of time before finally being detected. What’s more, costs associated with loss of data can run in the millions and lead to customer loss, brand damage and stock price decline.”

While there are specific strategies and tools to help manage and investigate insider threats, our respondents found them to be labor intensive. For example:

  • • Fifty-five percent of respondents said that managing too many security alerts was the most time-consuming element of investigating insider threats.
  • • Forty-four percent of respondents admitted they do not have enough staff resources to analyze data permissions correctly.

There was a silver lining as 65 percent of the security professionals surveyed estimated that machine learning-based solutions that identify insider threats would free up more than 12 staff hours a week.

“To mitigate the risk, organizations should ask themselves where their sensitive data lies and invest in protecting it. Businesses can employ solutions, especially those based on machine learning technology that can process and analyze vast amounts of data, to help them pinpoint critical anomalies that indicate misuse of enterprise data and that also help them to quickly quarantine risky users to prevent and contain data breaches proactively,” Ray concluded.

Survey Methodology

Conducted June 6-8 in London, at Insecurity Europe 2017, Europe’s largest security focused conference, the in-person survey is based on responses from attendees including IT professionals, managers and executives. To view the full survey results, visit

Imperva® (NASDAQ: IMPV) is a leading provider of cyber security solutions that protect business-critical data and applications. The company’s SecureSphere, CounterBreach, Incapsula and Camouflage product lines enable organizations to discover assets and risks, protect information wherever it lives – in the cloud and on-premises – and comply with regulations. The Imperva Defense Center, a research team comprised of some of the world’s leading experts in data and application security, continually enhances Imperva products with up-to-the-minute threat intelligence, and publishes reports that provide insight and guidance on the latest threats and how to mitigate them. Imperva is headquartered in Redwood Shores, California.