A recent study from Dell, which does much to pimp its ‘solution’, suggests business users and IT professionals in the UK, Germany and US feel hampered by security measures, especially when working remotely.
Traditional security policies, the survey concludes, lead to “too many passwords, access protocols and employee workarounds that expose the business to risk,” a feeling shared by 91% of the 750+ respondents and echoed by Dell’s Product Marketing Manager, Todd Peterson, who said:
The key thing we learned is that everything everyone expected is true. Security is a higher priority and better funded than increasing user productivity.
Well, it’s good to see security being prioritised.
Unfortunately not everyone feels the same way – those surveyed provided the following analysis of their security experience:
- more than 90% of business respondents use multiple passwords on a daily basis (what’s not to like about that, other than the fact it isn’t 100%? I do hope they are hard to guess and not shared around the office though)
- 92% are negatively impacted when required to use additional security for remote work (ah, diddums)
- more than half say security’s negative impact on day-to-day work has increased as a result of changes made to corporate security policies in the past 18 months (but their organisation is more secure, right?)
- nearly 70% of IT professionals say employee workarounds to avoid IT-imposed security measures pose the greatest risk to the organization (agreed, shadow IT is a problem)
In all seriousness, I think a prioritisation of security over productivity is not the end of the world (I’m biased) but do recognise that a combination of both would be an ideal alternative, as does Spinal Tap fan (?) John Milburn, Executive Director and GM, Identity and Access Management, Dell Security, who said:
It’s undeniable that IT staff, business professionals, and employees struggle with security. The business puts security first above employee convenience, and, right now, IT thinks it has only two options for security – turn the dial to 1 (open) or 11 (super secure).
So what’s the alternative, given how other recent surveys have shown that employees continue to be one of the biggest sources of risk in the workplace, given their low valuation of corporate data and propensity to accept bribes or otherwise sell business secrets for as little as £100?
Dell has a solution – of course – but what about you?
How do you keep your employees working in as productive a manner as possible while also securing them, you and your business?
Do you see security or productivity as the priority or can you manage both at the same time?