What is Exfiltration in cybersecurity?

Exfiltration in cybersecurity refers to bad actors stealing or moving data. Exfiltration is also known as data theft or data exfil or extrusion, exportation, or extraction. Whatever terminology, it boils down to unauthorized data movement. It can occur through malware infection or even through physical theft of devices that house sensitive data.

How to Recognize This Threat: Without the right tools, it can take organizations months to recognize data is gone. Deploy tools that offer visibility into your network and all related employee activity.

How to Prevent This Threat: What are those tools? The latest management consoles for networking devices like firewalls offer broad visibility into network activity, helping you detect and prevent exfiltration. Well-trained employees who know to avoid clicking on any unknown or unverified attachments help prevent malware designed to exfiltrate data from entering your network. Email security is a good supplement in that regard. And of course, securing your physical devices with locks and strong authentication measures makes it difficult for bad actors to get your data, even if they get the devices.