Manufacturing data at risk from over exposure

Industrial internet of things

Data security company Varonis has released research based on an analysis of four billion files across 50 organisations in the manufacturing industry and finds that there’s a huge problem of overexposure of data in the sector.

Every employee can access, on average, six million files on their first day on the job and four out of every 10 organizations have 1,000+ sensitive files open to every employee.

In addition 44 percent of companies have more than 1,000 active 'ghost user' accounts enabled -- accounts where users have left the company or moved to another role but their account has been left active. Plus more than half of companies have over 500 accounts with passwords that never expire.


"Manufacturers hold sensitive, and incredibly valuable data that put them at risk. And as we saw with WannaCry, DarkSide and so many other attacks, ransomware can stop production lines and halt businesses. All too often, information is overexposed and under protected. To limit the damage attackers can do, you must reduce your blast radius," says Matt Lock, technical director at Varonis. "Companies need to ask themselves three questions to better prepare for an attack: Do you know where your important data is stored? Do you know that only the right people have access to it? Do you know that they're using data correctly? If you don't know the answers to these three questions, you won't be able to identity the early stages of a cyberattack."

You can read more and get the full report on the Varonis blog and there's an infographic summary of the findings below.

Image credit: Scharfsinn/

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