McAfee says staff are 'greatest challenge' to security

Employee leaks ‘most significant data threat’

A new survey by security specialist McAfee has found that the most significant threat to businesses was data leaked accidentally or intentionally by employees.

Despite data leaks forming the most significant threat in the survey, the McAfee survey revealed that businesses were reluctant to report breaches on the back of concerns of ‘reputational impact’.

One in ten firms even said that they would not report a data breach inless legally obliged to do so.

The survey found that a quarter of businesses had a new product or financial project such as a merger or acquisition postponed or cancelled due to a data breach. 

Yet only a half of the firms surveyed that had experienced a data breach too steps to protect their systems from further leaks. 

"More than half of organizations have, at some point in their history, decided not to further pursue or investigate a security incident because of the cost of such an investigation/pursuit," McAfee revealed in the Underground Economies report (pdf).

The firm warned that failed to follow up on breaches meant that "potential vectors of attack are not shored up and future penetration is possible or the threat persists."

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