Business travelers reckless with their data

Both employees and executives are under a lot of pressure from work, to be online as much as possible, especially when abroad. This puts their data under a lot of security risks, even though in many cases, they’re not aware of it.

These conclusions were published in a new paper released by security experts Kaspersky Lab, which have polled almost 12,000 people all over the world, regarding their business connectivity habits.

Even though they carry confidential and valuable work data on their smartphones and other mobile devices, people are very reckless when going online.

“This report shows us that cybercrime is a real hazard while traveling and employees are putting confidential business information at risk. The insight provided by the report should be a red flag for corporate information security specialists, as the business travel behaviour we have unearthed here presents a significant corporate data protection challenge. It’s now up to businesses to respond with appropriate security solutions, if they wish to protect themselves,” says Konstantin Voronkov, Head of Endpoint Product Management at Kaspersky Lab.

The reckless behaviour stems from the assumption that business devices are more secure than personal ones, regardless of connectivity. Among the best ways to keep data safe while abroad, Voronkov says, is to be educated and aware of the risks involving connectivity. Then, using countermeasures, such as VPNs, encryption, multi-layered endpoint protection, URL filtering technologies, etc.

“When you are out of your corporate network perimeter, the most efficient, and often the only protection applicable, is that on your laptop or mobile device”, he added.

Here is the breakdown of the report:

  • 20 per cent of people have been targets of cyber-crime abroad, rising to 31 per cent among business managers
    54 per cent of people, and 62 per cent of senior executives behave the same, in-country or abroad
  • 48 per cent of senior managers use unsecure public access Wi-Fi
  • 44 per cent use such Wi-Fi to transmit work email

Image source: Shutterstock/Angela Aladro mella