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01.25.08

A Recent Security Horror Story

By Dan Morrill

This will teach folks to put out help wanted ads, seems a receptionist in Florida read a help wanted ad that her employer put on, and thought that she was going to be replaced. Rather than asking, and thinking that her job was threatened, she decided to delete files, to the tune of 2.5 million dollars.

A Florida woman who believed she was about to get fired has been accused of deleting $2.5m worth of computer files to seek revenge on her employer. Jacksonville Sheriff's officials say Marie Lupe Cooley, 41, used her own account credentials to access the server of Steven E. Hutchins Architects and delete seven years' worth of drawings. The firm's alarm company said someone entered the premises at 11 p.m. on Sunday and was there for about four hours. Source: Register

Security engineers are always going to tell you to have minimum permission sets, good backups, and be prepared for the worst. This is standard operating procedure, but when it comes to a small company, these kinds of procedures are often not followed.

This is not the first horror story along these lines, but small business makes up a disproportionate number of employers, and should be paying the same kind of attention to detail that big businesses do.

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As talk of recession, stock market variations, and the general unease that has permeated the workforce over the last two or
three months increases through 2008, you have got to pay attention to what employees are doing, across all companies no matter the size.

Fortunately the company was able to recover the files, the problem is she got a 1000 dollar bail, and is on the streets. Did they kill off her remote access?


About the Author:
Dan Morrill has been in the information security field for 18 years, both civilian and military, and is currently working on his Doctor of Management. Dan shares his insights on the important security issues of today through his blog, Managing Intellectual Property & IT Security, and is an active participant in the ITtoolbox blogging community.

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