A new SolarWinds report shows that more than 50 percent of information technology security professionals from federal civilian and defense agencies say foreign governments and careless insiders are the primary sources of IT security threats.
SolarWinds said Wednesday research firm Market Connections was commissioned to poll 200 federal IT security personnel between December and January for its annual Federal Cybersecurity Survey and found that 51 percent of respondents say contractors pose greater security risks to agencies.
Approximately 50 percent of respondents said they depend on multifactor authentication, ongoing and onboarding security training, data and systems monitoring and restricted use of external devices to mitigate contractor-related risks.
Sixty-six percent of IT security leaders said their agencies have made improvements to detect and prevent malicious threats, while a majority of respondents said they believe all government mandates, except the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, helped them manage security risks.
The survey also found that 40 percent of respondents consider their agencies’ security training initiatives as superior or better than average.
“The risk posed by careless untrained insiders and foreign governments is at an all-time high, yet for the most part, IT pros feel like their agencies are doing good jobs with their IT security,” said Jim Hansen, vice president of products, security and cloud at SolarWinds.
“In particular, they believe that government mandates and investments in training are paying dividends,” Hansen added.