First Advisor

Bowles, Robert G.

Second Advisor

Lupo, James A.

Third Advisor

Barnes, Stephen D.


College for Professional Studies

Degree Name

MS Systems Engineering


School of Computer & Information Science

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Number of Pages

84 pages


The Insider threat is defined similarly by experts in the information technology world for businesses, but addressing the threat has not been of great focus for most organizations. Technology and the Internet have grown exponentially over the past decade leading to changes in how business is conducted. Some basic business practices remain the same; protect the organization and its customers from breach of privacy. How data is gathered, stored, and retrieved has changed. Protecting the perimeter is still important, but these changes in technology now open the doors to a new threat; one that is known but not commonly protected against; the insider. Whether intentionally, or accidentally, the insider threat needs to be incorporated into the currently used security architectures and best practices. How should an organization include the insider threat to the current architecture is the question. Changes need to be made by organizations to the current security architecture. Currently, using technology is not enough, but is still necessary. In order to make it better, considering the employee as a whole and the daily activities necessary to complete a job, as well as working with other business units as a whole needs to be included in the architecture. Behavioral traits can be considered but there are issues in privacy that also need to be considered. Monitoring can be done, but that should not be the only thing considered. Employees lack knowledge as to why actions can have a negative effect on an organization and the way to address this is education. Educating end users is necessary and should be performed regularly to keep not just the technologically inclined up to date. Without education, the current technology used will continue to keep out the intruders, but will not be effective enough to protect against intentional and accidental misuse of the organization and its networks.

Date of Award

Fall 2011

Location (Creation)

Denver, Colorado

Rights Statement

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