Insider Risk Digest: April

Dive into our latest Insider Risk Digest, where we unravel recent cases of espionage, insider betrayal, and security breaches across various sectors, from a prevented espionage attempt by a former NSA employee to alarming leaks within the Swedish police force. We also examine the broader implications of economic pressures on insider threats and explore international espionage affecting European democracy.

We value your insights—if you find this digest insightful, join the conversation and share this digest on your socials.

Former NSA employee Jareh Dalke has been sentenced to almost 22 years in prison after attempting to sell classified information to China. In 2022, Dale had exchanged emails with an FBI agent posing as a Russian agent. Motivated by debt and ideology, Dale agreed to share classified information in exchange for $85,000. Whilst this case highlights a success story of countering insider risk, it nonetheless highlights the presence of insiders in even the most secure and essential organisations in the world.

John Murray Rowe Jr. has pleaded guilty over his attempts to deliver and communicate classified information to a foreign government. After nearly 40 years as a test engineer for multiple defence contractors, Rowe Jr. began committing a number of security violations and revealing a devout interest in Russian affairs. Rowe Jr., however, fell to the same trick as Dalke, whereby he met with an undercover FBI agent, thinking it was an agent of the Russian government. Another demonstration that if disturbing signs are taken seriously, insider risk can be tackled. Rowe Jr. will face trial in August of this year, with a possible sentence of life imprisonment.

German police arrested the aide of the AfD’s top candidate in the European Parliament elections. The man, named Jiang Guo, has been identified as an employee of the Chinese secret service, accused of passing information about negotiations and decisions within the European Parliament to his intelligence service. The arrest has seen the calls for tougher crackdowns on foreign infiltration attempting to steer European democracy and decision-making.

According to Cifas, the number of individuals recorded in its cross-sectoral Insider Threat Database has increased by 14% throughout 2023. The most common reason behind the recorded insider incidents was the “dishonest action to obtain by benefit by theft or deception”. Employee fraud has seen an important rise due to the opportunities afforded through remote working, and the pressures exerted on individuals from the cost-of-living crisis. 

When those who are supposed to protect society switch sides: Swedish Prime Minister Kristensson admitted his concerns over the incredibly damaging revelations by the Swedish Newspaper DN, police employees have been leaking confidential information. Criminals have exploited vulnerable individuals within the police force, either through romantic relationships or intimidation, with the goal of obtaining confidential information on investigations and enemy gang members. In four cases, leaks were followed up with revenge attacks, including murders. 

The Dutch General Intelligence and Security Service (AIVD) has recently released its 2023 Annual Report. Throughout the year, the AIVD has discovered and thwarted espionage attempts by Russia and China, among others. Important to look out for is the growing threat arising from insiders, and the recognition of challenges such as critical infrastructure resilience, and knowledge security.

DTEX has released it’s yearly Insider Risk Investigations Report, with a special edition dedicated to Foreign Interference. Of greatest concern is the 70% increase in support requests to protect organisations against foreign interference. Specifically, critical infrastructure and the public sector were those most targeted. 

Take the Next Step in Insider Threat Mitigation

Concerned about insider threats within your organisation?

Book a meeting with our experts today to develop a tailored strategy that safeguards your organisation's integrity and intellectual property

Book a Meeting

Share Post Online

Join the conversation

Shopping Bag 0