SANS Institute Chief of Mission Jim Yacone, seen here in 2011 as a FBI special agent in charge in Colorado, said that a "consent phishing" scam is to blame for a data breach affecting roughly 28,000 records. (Andy Cross, The Denver Post)

The SANS Institute is attributing a data breach that exposed roughly 28,000 records containing personally identifiable information to a malicious Office 365 add-on, which caused an employee’s email account to automatically forward emails to an attacker’s address.

The security training authority has confirmed to SC Media that it was the victim of a “consent phishing” scam – an attempt by adversaries to get employees to install a malicious application and/or grant it permissions that will allow it to access sensitive data or perform unwanted functions. And the fact that a trusted source of cyber expertise fell victim to the scheme demonstrates that no organization is immune to security slip-ups – as it takes just one uninformed, distracted or negligent employee to trigger an incident.

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