Preventing Human Errors in Data Breach

Preventing Human Errors in Data Breaches

Jun 13, 2021 / Kron

Data breaches are one of the most critical digital business issues putting information stacks at risk, while human error is one of the main reasons for the emergence of data breach incidents.

Human-driven data breaches caused by the activity or inactivity of the professionals within your company while in a digital setting may lead to disruption of business continuity and cause financial loss.

To prevent data breach incidents caused by human error and minimize potential damages, you first must deep-dive into the source and reasons for the errors.

Data Breaches and Human Error

Human error in cybersecurity refers to wrong or unintentional activities of corporate employees or users that cause security breaches and the spread of these breaches.

According to a study carried out by the Stanford University in the United States and researchers at Tessian, a cybersecurity company, in 2021, approximately 88% of data breach incidents are caused by human error. The study result shows that, even in the third decade of the 21st century, during which automation systems are rather augmented, the users' unsafe online activity is still the driving force behind major cybersecurity issues and data leaks.

The Source of Human Errors: Skill and Decision-Making Mechanism

First of all, you should keep in mind that there is no limit to human errors. According to the data security literature based on the study results, two main groups were identified as the source of the errors. Talent-based errors and decision-making mechanism-based errors come up as the prevalent source of data breaches caused by human error. The distinction between these two groups is the sophistication level of the user.

  • Skill-Based Errors

A skill-based human error is caused by offsets and bypasses. Delay and negligence are the main reasons behind the talent-based errors like minor mistakes by corporate employees during a task or event that they are familiar with. In such a scenario, if your employees cannot take the right action, even though they are aware it is the correct one, it may be due to tiredness, attention deficit, density, and loss of motivation.

  • Decision-Based Errors

The reasons your corporate employees make decision-based errors include many different aspects. A decision-based error is caused by the lack of knowledge and experience of the user, and the fact that the user is not at the sophistication level required for the particular situation they face, or the user decides not to do anything by avoiding taking on responsibility.

You can minimize human error by utilizing automation that will improve your employees' cybersecurity awareness and direct them to secure activities.

The Psychology of Human Error

According to a study called “Psychology of Human Error”, if corporate employees encounter an investigation and evaluation process, most tend to deny that they have made a mistake. The study also suggests that 50% of the employees are pretty sure they made a mistake that could jeopardize the security of the corporate data.

On the other hand, the employee's age distribution is very important in the management of human errors. According to the study, young employees are five times more likely to admit they have made a mistake. While 50% of employees between the ages of 18-30 admit they have made a mistake, only 10% of employees above the age of 51 admit they have made a mistake.

The study also shows that 25% of employees click phishing emails. While 34% of male employees open emails intended for a phishing attack, this rate is 17% for female employees. Age is again an important factor in clicking these phishing emails; 8% of employees above the age of 51 who participated in the research sample open phishing emails, while 32% of the employees between the ages 31-40 do so.

Considering the result, it is critically important for you to get a cybersecurity solution that is able to protect your corporate data successfully. Privileged Access Management (PAM) is one of the main methods that you can utilize to develop solutions to human errors.

PAM and Human Errors

Cybercriminals first try to gain access to authorized and privileged accounts with access to your sensitive data. This is where PAM comes into play, as it isolates the information of privileged users with access to your data on the network, providing advanced protection with multilayer security applications.

Through PAM, user accounts are always under control, and this makes it easier to prevent human errors made by authorized users and to ensure strict control over employees’ activity in the network. Four modules comprising the fundamental components of Single Connect, Kron’s PAM solution, prevent the emergence of data breaches caused by human errors.

  • Privileged Task Automation (PTA)

PTA automates the users' routine tasks to resolve service disruptions, delays, and security breach incidents.

  • Password Vault

This feature verifies all authorized sessions on your network and creates a fully encrypted infrastructure. It also has a password vault that prevents authorized users from sharing their passwords, thus avoiding them from getting into the hands of cybercriminals.

  • Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

Different from regular authentication methods, MFA requires time and geo-location verification for privileged access requests. This way the identity of the users requesting access is verified securely, and malware attempts are rejected.

  • Dynamic Data Masking

This feature records and masks the data and all operations carried out by privileged authorized accounts and network administrators, eliminating any uncertainty regarding all activities on the network.


Zero-Trust and Least Privilege methods are also closely related to Privileged Access Management applications. The principle of Zero-Trust is "Never trust, always verify". According to that, companies never trust any digital intranet or extranet IDs and apply a comprehensive security check on whoever requests access permission. When the Zero-Trust principle is used in integration with PAM checking privileged access permission, perfect results are obtained.

The Principle of Least Principle (PoLP) is based on the process of creating profiles with different levels of access to data. When different users have different levels of access, special permission is requested for all network activity with the purpose of protecting data. A more robust cybersecurity solution can be achieved by combining the PoLP and PAM.

Our Privileged Access Management (PAM) solution, Single Connect, has distinct advanced modules, including Privileged Session Manager and TACACS+ / RADIUS Unified Access Manager, in addition to the four modules mentioned above.

With Single Connect, our comprehensive PAM solution providing end-to-end protection to prevent human-driven data breach incidents, you can protect your corporate data and assign privileged access to only certain users.

Contact us to learn more about Single Connect. Follow Kron Blog for recent and detailed news on data security.


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