Prevent tailgating – One of the big threats

Tailgating is what it’s called when someone sneaks onto a location where they are not allowed. Something you’d probably want to prevent, right?

Tailgaters are individuals who could be there to steal data or damage equipment, install spyware or malicious hardware or wreak any other kind of havoc within your organisation.

Also known as “piggybacking”, tailgating is the most popular way for an unauthorized person to gain access to a company. It is also one of the most common security breaches that affects modern organisations. In most cases tailgating works because unaware employees are too polite not to hold the door for a stranger, even if they aren’t wearing a badge. Workers uniforms of some sort are also a popular “disguise” among tailgaters. Who wouldn’t open the door for an electrician or a plumber, right?

“One of the biggest issues with tailgating is the potential for crime to be done by someone who you didn’t even know was in your building,” Charles Crenshaw, chief executive officer for ISONAS Security Systems.

People tailgating strangers is a big security threat
“It‘s not just the equipment I‘m after, all of your secrets are now my secrets and all I had to do was smile.”

There are many ways to prevent tailgating:

  • Smart cards
  • Security guards
  • Biometrics
  • Turnstiles
  • PIN numbers
  • Visitor badges
  • …and more or a combination of several of these

What all those methods have in common is that none of them will really eliminate tailgating if employees are not aware of the threat. It may seem harmless to hold the door for a stranger or a delivery person, but that is precisely why hackers use this tactic more and more.

Building a security awareness culture within an organisation is vital to prevent tailgating. When you have a high level of security awareness your employees understand that keeping the workplace safe is their responsibility too. They are trained to question people who are not wearing badges or who they do not recognize, and they realize that not all delivery people come bearing good things.

A few simple security behaviors could make all the difference when it comes to prevent tailgating. That’s why a good security awareness training could be a smart investment.

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