Malicious Insiders Case Study – Ex Cisco Employee

In 2018, Sudhish Kasaba Ramesh admitted to hacking into Cisco’s cloud system, over four months after he resigned from his role within the company. The ex-employee used malicious code to automatically delete over 400 virtual machines which were being used to support the company’s WebEx Teams conferencing software. From this, 16,000 WebEx Teams accounts were unreachable, some shut down for two weeks. 

This attack cost the company around $1.4 million, highlighting the substantial effects a malicious insider can have on an organisation. Not only were customer accounts affected and compromised, but the company as a whole took a large financial loss as a result. 

It is uncertain why Sudhish Kasaba Ramesh carried out this attack. He had already left his job at Cisco, though his recent role within the company perhaps allowed him to carry out a more effective attack than as an outsider. For his actions, Ramesh has been sentenced to two years in prison, with a one year period of supervised release afterwards. He is also ordered to pay a $15,000 fine.