Employee Loyalty Hacked: 20% Would Sell Company Passwords For Cash

About 20 percent of employees say in a new survey they would give up their work passwords to hackers in exchange for cash.

SailPoint’s poll found the problem is only getting worse. In 2015, 1-in-7 employees said they would compromise company networks for cash, but now that figure has surged to 1-in-5.

What’s worrying is that workers in the United States, at 27 percent, were most likely to sell passwords to opportunistic hackers.

Out of the employees who stated they would sell their passwords, 44 percent say they needed less than $1,000. Some even say they would sell passwords for as low as $100.

Workers in Australia and the Netherlands were the least likely to say they would.

The sample size for the SailPoint survey, conducted by Vanson Bourne, consisted of 1,000 employees from companies with over 1,000 employees, meaning there’s an incredible amount at stake if breaches occur.

Despite endless security recommendations to practice good password hygiene by relying on multiple access codes for multiple applications, workers continue at a shockingly high rate to reuse the same password again and again. A total of 65 percent of respondents admitted to using just one password across different applications, and a third of respondents say they shared passwords with co-workers.

“The security perimeter for organizations all over the world has evaporated: breaches are now an inevitable reality for every organization,” SailPoint’s report states. “These breaches can spread quickly, wreaking havoc on the business targeted, while often causing harm to employees, customers, partners and investors.”

Not only do businesses have to be concerned about access attempts from the outside in isolation, they now—more than ever—need to be concerned about their own employees willingly cooperating with hackers, as opposed to inadvertently leaking password information via a phishing attack.

The survey also found 40 percent of respondents had access to work accounts, even after they had left the company, opening an incredible opportunity for potentially disgruntled employees.

SailPoint surveyed “1,000 office workers at large organizations (with at least 1,000 employees) across the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, the Netherlands and Australia.”

By Jonah Bennett