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Half of businesses admit cybersecurity policies unfit for permanent remote working

(Image credit: Pixabay)

Nearly half of UK businesses believe their cybersecurity policies are unfit for a permanent remote working model, leaving many exposed to phishing attacks and data breaches. This is according to a new report from Centrify, based on a poll of 200 senior decision makers from large and medium-sized businesses.

With current policies in place, almost two thirds (65 percent) expect to experience more phishing attacks and cybersecurity incidents than before the pandemic.

To tackle the issue, firms are doubling down on staff training, with three quarters running sessions on staying safe while working from home. Further, half of the businesses surveyed plan to hire new IT staff and security experts.

Most businesses also see outsourced IT as a potent threat while remote working remains in place, mostly because IT staff usually have privileged administrative access to infrastructure and other critical resources.

“Acknowledging the security issues posed by remote working is essential during this difficult time," said Andy Heather VP at Centrify.

"Unfortunately, remote workers including third-party contractors have been deemed a desirable target by hackers and cyber criminals, who are assuming that these employees have not been properly trained in, or protected by, the correct security measures in their transition to remote working during the Covid-19 pandemic."

For Heather, the fact that so many businesses are adjusting their security policies is “promising”. Upgrading security practices doesn’t have to be strenuous or expensive, he says, adding that it merely requires a “cohesive effort” from all involved employees.