By Pui Chi Li, Head of Marketing for the Middle East and Africa at Xerox
We expect more and more connected devices to emerge to support the IoT trend and we are not talking about laptops, phones and tablets but many other smart workplace devices that are now connected to the internet.
Connectivity and accessibility from multiple internal and external networks create higher cyber security risks. Some industry predictions say that the number of connected devices will exceed 50 billion by 2020.
In order to stay threat free organisations should be very careful when choosing office equipment and always pay a lot of attention to the type of embedded security solutions their preferred brand offers.
Often office machines become the first point of entry for cyber criminals as their security is not well taken care of and by being connected to the office network these devices often work as the access bridge to sensitive data.
Growing mobility and connectivity influenced by the IoT create bigger security risks. Digital transformation is not a simple process of companies going digital and accessing their information as well as devices remotely, it also concerns higher exposure to cyber-predators with more room for mistakes.
In order to avoid security breaches we believe three key elements should be considered by any organisation when it comes to managing employees’ behaviour:
- Change management should be approached very seriously and no matter how small and insignificant the shift of the office IT environment is, it is important to not only educate all the employees about introduced innovation but to monitor their acceptance and response to it. Change management is a process that needs to be followed very meticulously to avoid security disasters in situations where certain employees did not feel comfortable with the innovation and didn’t realise potential dangers were represented by disregard towards new processes or rules.
- External device guidelines should be strict and straightforward. The BYOD trend is beautiful and game changing but allowing people to connect to multiple networks using their devices carries potential risks. Therefore personalised access to office equipment is very important as well as the network infrastructure set-up. We believe that while office equipment connectivity drives better collaboration and promotes work efficiency, it also carries higher security risks, therefore end-point security solutions should be a top priority for any organisation.
- Constant education and updates on how to stay resilient when it comes to security. External drives, simple access passwords and dangerous websites are few of the security breach sources employees should be aware of. We will definitely see even wider adoption of cloud computing and people need to have a better understanding of how clouds operate and what dangers they present in addition to their amazing properties and increased mobility.