E-Investigations Releases the Top 5 Action Items To Protect Against an Internal Data Breach

As The Guardian reported on June 10, 2013, the individual responsible for one of the most significant data breaches in US political history is Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old former technical assistant for the CIA. Mr. Snowden has proven how important it is to have internal data breach strategies in place to flag employee activities and access.

E-Investigations has been investigating employee data breach situations since 2006 and has expert computer forensic investigators that can react with first responder strategies if a data breach is discovered or suspected.

Gary Huestis, Director of Digital Forensics with E-Investigations, has seen the damage that just one rouge employee can cause, “Even if just one employee decides to sell, leak, or use proprietary company trade secrets, the company can lose thousands, if not millions, of dollars”, Mr. Huestis went on to say that “companies need to be aware that threats of a data breach from both external and internal sources are very real and a Data Breach Action Plan should be in place to raise awareness of these threats”.

E-Investigations recommends that (at a minimum) the following action items are included in any company Data Breach Action Plan:

    • Monitor employee activities. Develop company appropriate monitoring of all employees. Most significant data breach situations come from mid to high level employees.



    • Set server level authorizations for all sensitive company proprietary intellectual property. Don’t allow standard access to any sensitive data or files.



    • Scan all terminated or resigned employee computers for file downloads to USB devices, deleted files/emails and cloud email or cloud storage devices immediately. The longer a data breach goes unnoticed, the harder it is to mitigate the damage.



  • Scan all company owned mobile devices for deleted text messages, email and photos. Depending on the business and the situation, mobile devices may contain the best evidence of a data breach.


E-Investigations has the tools and experience to perform logical, physical, file system and password extraction of data from digital devices. By the incorporating the latest hardware and software technologies, E-Investigations has one of the most thorough capabilities for computer and mobile device investigations in the industry – with the ability to image thousands of computers, tablets, mobile phones, smartphones and portable GPS devices, and all major mobile OS: iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Nokia, Symbian, Windows Mobile and Palm.

E-Investigation’s Computer Forensic Investigators follow the trail and decipher the information regardless of whether the evidence is digital, such as electronically stored information found on computers, tablets, mobile phones or other devices or if the investigation requires traditional private investigative services. E-Investigations’ tools and techniques include surveillance, undercover work and detailed record searches. The final product helps our clients gain a deeper understanding of what has happened or what is occurring. The gained clarity and discovery of truth allows our clients to quickly respond and recover.

Gary Huestis is the Director of Digital Forensics at E-Investigations. Mr. Huestis is an EnCase certified examiner and a licensed private investigator.

About E-Investigations:

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