Cloud, Mobile Technologies Expose Security Cracks

 
 
By Nathan Eddy  |  Posted 2014-03-07 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Despite the best efforts of many organizations to manage and protect data, companies are still experiencing significant breaches. Far from feeling safe and secure, most companies believe it is inevitable that another security breach will occur, according to a study commissioned by identity access management (IAM) specialist SailPoint. More than half of the companies surveyed (51 percent) feel it is "just a matter of time" before the next security breach happens. SailPoint commissioned Loudhouse to conduct research examining the current trends and concerns in IAM, which includes cloud computing and bring-your-own-device (BYOD) initiatives. While these new technologies bring greater employee freedom, flexibility and productivity, the resulting change and complexity for businesses often mean they are forever behind the curve. Four hundred U.S. and U.K. IT decision-makers at organizations with 5,000 or more employees across a range of industrial sectors completed the survey, which explored their opinions of and attitudes toward data security. eWEEK shares the study's findings.

 
 
 
  • Cloud, Mobile Technologies Expose Security Cracks

    by Nathan Eddy
    1 - Cloud, Mobile Technologies Expose Security Cracks
  • Businesses Are Struggling for Control

    An inability to get the whole picture across all systems (45 percent), over-reliance on IT support (43 percent) and an inability to manage new technologies (40 percent) were all significant challenges experienced with IAM strategies over the last 12 months. Nearly half (46 percent) of survey respondents said they are not confident they can prove the effectiveness of internal controls over user access privileges in an IT audit.
    2 - Businesses Are Struggling for Control
  • More Companies Doing Business in the Cloud

    Cloud-based applications are now viewed as the preferred technology in today's enterprise companies. Nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of companies have a policy in place stating that they must evaluate cloud-based applications when looking to procure new software. The survey indicated that by 2016, more than half (59 percent) of mission-critical applications will be in the cloud.
    3 - More Companies Doing Business in the Cloud
  • New Technologies, New Challenges

    While 82 percent of organizations allow employees to use their own personal devices, only 41 percent automatically remove mission-critical data from a device once an employee leaves, with 35 percent removing data manually and 6 percent admitting data is left on personal devices.
    4 - New Technologies, New Challenges
  • IAM Comes to the Fore

    Nearly half (49 percent) of businesses surveyed see the primary focus of their IAM strategy as preventing further breaches and protecting their data. Just over one in four (27 percent) consider the focus is to demonstrate compliance, with 17 percent claiming it reduces their operation and administration costs. Companies also think IAM is critical to reducing their operational risk (53 percent) and enabling new business initiatives (40 percent) across the company.
    5 - IAM Comes to the Fore
  • Looking for the Big Picture

    Nearly half of businesses with an IAM strategy (45 percent) believe an inability to get the "big picture" across all systems and applications has been the most significant challenge experienced with their IAM strategy in the last 12 months. User reliance on IT support (43 percent) and an inability to manage new technologies (40 percent) also cause concern, the survey revealed.
    6 - Looking for the Big Picture
  • A Very Real Threat

    More than half (54 percent) of companies have had terminated users try to access company data after leaving. When left unchecked, this can have serious ramifications—nearly half (45 percent) of businesses surveyed said they believe employees within their organization would sell company data if offered the right price.
    7 - A Very Real Threat
  • Maintaining Information Security Is a Top Priority

    Whether it is because of employees inadvertently losing or opening company data, or maliciously accessing it, businesses need effective access control. Indeed, improving or maintaining information security (75 percent) is believed to be the top IT priority for businesses in the coming 12 months, followed by improving or maintaining IT infrastructure (61 percent) and improving IT-business alignment (61 percent).
    8 - Maintaining Information Security Is a Top Priority
  • Regulation and Monitoring Need Refinement

    If asked by the chief information officer (CIO) to present a record of user access privileges for each employee that same day, about one in four of the IT decision-makers surveyed (23 percent) would be unable to do so. Just as worrying, only 38 percent of respondents said they regulate the use of personal applications from the workplace.
    9 - Regulation and Monitoring Need Refinement
  • A Fundamental Role for IAM

    In essence, IAM plays a fundamental role to the overall business strategy. Indeed, 88 percent of survey respondents said they believe IAM is important to their organization overall, with nearly half (47 percent) claiming its role is "very important." Survey results indicated the challenge for many IAM strategies is ensuring that employees have the power and flexibility to do their job while ensuring data protection is being upheld.
    10 - A Fundamental Role for IAM
  • Flexibility Is the Key to a Successful IAM Strategy

    The survey indicated businesses need to go further if they are to 1) regain control over user access and 2) meet their tightening compliance requirements. The report concluded that the key to success is flexibility, where IAM controls are able to respond quickly and effectively to the changing environment. Yet, with the potential wide-ranging repercussions of a failed IT audit, businesses are putting their reputation on the line with the use of overly rigid IAM strategies, the study warned.
    11 - Flexibility Is the Key to a Successful IAM Strategy
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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