How corporate spies access your company's secrets

The vulnerability you don’t see may be mopping the floor or dropping off the mail


Some information spies navigate the hiring process with every intention to steal corporate secrets for a competitor or foreign state once inside. Others turn against an employer when angered and leave, lured by job offers and incentives to haul out as much data as they can when they go.

Meanwhile, enterprise efforts to spot traitors and limit their access to sensitive data may not be enough. With the right job and the right access, operatives posing as janitors, mailroom employees, or IT staff can skirt efforts to defend data, using their broad access to walk data out the door.

CSO looks at enterprise barriers to these information sleeper agents, how corporate spies get past the protections, and what security leaders can do technically and otherwise to keep their data vaults safe from prying eyes.


Corporate spies enter from other organizations by genuinely qualifying for the work at hand while keeping their intentions hidden. Unfortunately, totally avoiding prospects who work for competitors may be difficult to impossible, if not undesirable because people want to recruit people from their competitors. “Competitor employees have the skills, market intelligence, and experience the enterprise wants, so they are prime candidates,” says Sol Cates, CSO, Vormetric.

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