Mitigating Risks from Unmonitored Communication Channels

The Cybersecurity Readiness Podcast Series

Apr 14 2023 • 56 mins

Significant fines in excess of $2 billion have been levied on organizations in the financial services sector for failing to capture, retain and supervise communications. This crackdown on non-compliant communications is the clearest indicator yet that regulators have lost patience with firms that still haven't addressed supervision and record-keeping risks that were exacerbated by the pandemic. In this episode, Garth Landers, Director of Global Product Marketing at Theta Lake, discusses how businesses can mitigate risks from unmonitored communication channels.

Time Stamps

02:20 -- Please share some highlights of your professional journey with the listeners.

05:10 -- Different types of modern communication tools.

12:05 -- The 2022 Modern Communications Compliance and Security report(produced by Theta Lake) finds that unmonitored communication channels remain the biggest risk. What are these risks?

21:19-- What are some best practices in securing the different communication channels?

28:47 -- Do you think an organization would be well served if they had written guidelines of the do's and don'ts when using certain channels and making that document readily available to all organizational members?

34:09 -- It's about helping individuals do the right things so that the communication is secure, as compared to gotcha, you made a mistake, and you should have done better. Thoughts?

36:51 -- I emphasize the importance of creating and sustaining a high-performance information security culture. Only when you create that culture, that work ethic, securing communication channels is sustainable in the long run.

40:43 -- We are talking about a proactive approach driven by a change in the mind shift where the leaders are looking at this apparent challenge (securing communication channels) as a strategic opportunity.

45:11 -- Can you address the archival and retrieval challenges?

52:00 -- If there were three or four takeaways that listeners should walk away with from today's discussion, what should they be?

Memorable Garth Landers Quotes/Statements

"Two-thirds of an organization believe that inside their organization, employees are using unmonitored communication channels."

"Unmonitored communication channels pop up because, in many cases, organizations decide not to empower their employees, they give them a Zoom, or a Cisco WebEx or a Microsoft Teams, or a RingCentral, or a Slack, etc., but they don't fully enable them. They don't turn on chat, or they don't allow file sharing, polls, or whiteboards. This forces employees to adopt and use unmonitored communication channels."

"From a process standpoint, don't take a top-down approach to implement modern collaboration platforms."

"Research shows that, on average, at least four different unified/modern communication tools are being used by organizations."

"Most end users are not engineered towards malfeasance and bad behavior, it's carelessness. And the greatest insider threat is that sort of carelessness, and lack of awareness."

"Policy works best when it's not some sort of abstract reality that you pull out when a bad thing happens."

"Technology is out there to get to that balance point of maximum productivity, productive IT but productive and efficient and compliant work as well."

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