Thursday, 1 August 2013

How cyber-secure is your critical data?

Is critical or confidential business information walking out of your door every day??

A study by Acronis into the use of personal devices used in the workplace found that 60% of firms are vulnerable to BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) risks and more than two thirds of UK businesses have no personal device security policy in place.

This means critical data is being put at risk when it leaves the company via an employee-owned device or through cloud-based file sharing.

The BYOD trend is here to stay and as the number of companies allowing staff to work remotely is increasing, there is a rapidly widening gap between the number of organisations with formal in place and those without. Whilst the benefits of the flexibility that working in this way brings is are huge, so are the risks – as data can be easily be carried and removed from site and insecure networks.

By ignoring basic security steps and not educating employees in BYOD, organisations are putting their confidential information at risk.

Cyber security is a major challenge for businesses and by not covering portable devices with relevant protection protocols, data is exposed to theft, corruption, malware and hackers.

The study - entitled 2013 Data Protection Trends Research - found 58 per cent of the 570 UK IT bosses surveyed admitted they do not have a BYOD policy in place to manage externally-owned devices like tablets and smartphones.

21% per cent of the respondents said a device password or key lock on personal devices was in place and only 18 per cent performed remote device wipes when staff left the company.

Corporate use of the Cloud for data storage is safe with relevant security policies however, 69 per cent of organisations do not have a policy in place for the use of public cloud, while eight in ten have not trained their employees in the proper use of these solutions.

Merlin Telecom urges businesses to proactively take measures to protect their business data and ensure that a suitable policy supported by staff awareness and training is in place.

Anders Lofgren, director of mobility solutions for Acronis, said: "Personal devices have permanently and positively changed the workplace, particularly in the ways employees collaborate, work remotely and interact with company data. Whilst BYOD is a huge opportunity for companies, but our research shows troubling signs of negligence in the face of these dangers."

Research data sourced from:

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