2023 Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Episode 3 — Stop Tailgating!

Cyber criminals will use whatever means necessary to exploit weaknesses in a security system. Often, they will attempt to get into secure areas so that they can directly access the computer system, using a technique known as “tailgating.”

Tailgating is the act of simply following someone into a restricted area who has credentials. Once they gain access to secure areas, they may try to access a single machine to upload a trojan horse so that they are able to remotely access the machine when they are no longer physically near the computer. Once one machine is compromised, it is very easy for the cyber criminals to gain access to the entire network. They may even try to access the company’s main servers and upload a virus or worm directly into the network at the source.

If you work in a building that requires everyone to have a security badge for identification, you can ask to see their badge. If they are unable to provide one, or if your company doesn’t use badges, you can politely ask who they are there to visit. When they provide that information, call the colleague they are at your office to see to verify the visitor. Then, escort the visitor to see their host, or request that their host meets you, so that the visitor isn’t left unsupervised in a secure area.

If the visitor does anything to make you feel uncomfortable or refuses to give you the name of the person, they are there to see, you can call your building’s security team or the police. Stay vigilant and stay safe.