Duluth, Georgia, January 22, 2002: Andrew Parsons, Vice President of Sales at Vector Networks, Inc. saves the day for his corporate competition by initiating and participating in a clandestine FBI sting operation. A Supervisory Special Agent of the Atlanta-FBI who needs to remain anonymous for security reasons dubs Mr.Parsons a hero. “Without Andy’s help, this never would have happened – especially so quickly”, said the Agent. Typically these operations take a year or more to conclude.
A disgruntled employee of the rival company contacted Mr. Parsons a week ago via the solutions email box, a tech support request line for Vector Networks’ products, using an anonymous email address. He offered Mr. Parsons the opportunity to purchase the complete customer database from his competitor for $20,000.
Shocked and concerned, Andy Parsons informed the rival CEO of the incident. Apparently, this had not been the first time an employee backlashes against the company as in fact there was already a criminal case pending in Florida. The FBI contacted Mr. Parsons and asked him to work as an undercover agent so that this perpetrator may be apprehended. Andy Parsons agreed to have a wiretap placed on his business phone lines and was given a “wish list” of questions that the FBI wanted answered by the offender. When the criminal contacted Andrew confirming the offer and validating the content of the database, a meeting was arranged.
Mr. Parsons was skilled in his negotiations with the wrongdoer and was able to get him to answer all of the FBI questions and agree to fly into Georgia for the meeting. The operation was planned to occur at a local hotel. After the exchange of data and money, the FBI burst into the room and apprehended and arrested the perpetrator and his accomplice.
Statistics on Corporate Security
According to security industry experts, employee pilfering is more common than we think.
Experts say that when information is stolen from a company, often the culprit is a seemingly loyal employee. Employees steal data because of dissatisfaction with salary, promotion opportunities, or working conditions; conflict with managers or financial problems linked to alcohol or drug use.
Reprinted from American Society for Industrial Security, 1999
A recent study conducted by Asta Networks and the University of California San Diego studied a minute fraction of the addressable Internet space and noted that almost 13,000 DoS attacks were launched against over 5000 targets in just one week.
The computer Security Institute/FBI also documents the problem in a reported study on computer breaches. This year’s survey of 538 respondents found 85 percent experiencing computer intrusions, with 64 percent serious enough to cause financial losses. Estimated losses from those willing to provide the information tallied 8 million, a 43 percent increase for the previous year.
Excerpt from Testimony of Harris N. Miller, July 16, 2001
President, Information Technology Association of America (ITAA)
Before the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation
Subcommittee on Science, Technology and Space.“Internet Security”
About Vector Networks, Inc.
Vector Networks is a privately owned company, which specializes in the development of Windows NT/2000 based software products for management and support of networked PCs on LANs and WANs.
More information on Vector Networks can be found at http://www.vector-networks.com
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