This paper conceptualizes human trustworthiness
as a key component for countering insider threats in an online community within the arena of corporate personnel security. Employees with access and authority have the most potential to cause damage to that information, to organizational reputation, or to the operational stability of the organization. The basic mechanisms of detecting changes in the trustworthiness of an individual who holds a key position in an organization resides in the observations of overt behavior – including communications behavior – over time. “Trustworthiness” is defined as the degree of correspondence between communicated intentions and behavioral outcomes that are observed over time , . This is the degree to which the correspondence between the target’s words and actions remain reliable, ethical and consistent, and any fluctuation does not exceed observer’s expectations over time . To be able to tell if the employee is trustworthy is thus determined by the subjective perceptions from individuals in his/her social network that have direct business functional connections, and thus the opportunity to repeatedly observe the correspondence between communications and behavior. The ability to correlate data-centric attributions, as observed changes in behavior from human perceptions; as analogous to “sensors” on the network, is the key to countering insider threats.