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London, UK and Paris, France: Imperva, Inc., a pioneer and leader of a new category of business security solutions for critical applications and high-value data in the data centre, has announced the results of a survey showing that Parisians are more likely to take corporate data than their UK counterparts. Imperva’s ‘Insider Threat Survey,’ a repeat of a street survey conducted in the UK two years ago, questioned people across a number of business sectors about their view on confidentiality. When asked if they would personally take corporate data, 78% of respondents in Paris admitted they had, with 63% in London also confessing to the same practice.

 

While the Parisian respondents prefer to use a USB stick (23%) to take the information away with them, in London this remains about the same but with smart phones the favoured method (41%).

When asked if they’d ever accessed company information at work which is not relevant to their role, 66% of Parisian respondents admitted they had, compared to 41% of London respondents. In both countries, the highest underlying factor that facilitates this activity is unrestricted access to files containing sensitive information (each scoring 51%).

Over half of Parisian respondents stated they knew of someone who had taken data - slightly lower in London at 47%. However, while no respondent in Paris claimed the information was stolen for profit, in London 4% said the information had been taken to ‘sell-on.’

A worrying discovery in this survey is that information is finding its way into the hands of competitors with both countries roughly equally affected, 60% in Paris, 59% in London. When asked how this had occurred, an ex-employee was cited as the main culprit (38% in Paris, 62% in London), although a further 54% in London blamed the leak on outsourcers. In both cities, respondents indicated that the customer database was targeted, 49% in France, 57% in UK.

Imperva CTO Amichai Shulman commented, “Rogue employees should be a major concern across many enterprises. This survey shows that both countries still have a long way to go to address the insider threat. The fact that a significant percentage of employees surveyed not only want to, but actually can, read confidential material is a stark warning that it’s time to put in place stronger security measures.”

When looking at other contrasting differences between the people in each city, highlights include:

While respondents in Paris prefer to check out salary details (26% vs. 11) and employee records (21% vs. 6%), those in London prefer customer records (39% vs 25%) and strategic documents (31% vs. 18%)

Respondents in Paris appear more inept, with 17% citing human error for the reason data finds its way into the hands of competitors, compared to just 8% for respondents in London.

***Notes on Survey

Surveyed 500 people in London, and 484 in Paris, from various business districts during October 2012