The pandemic-induced rush to work
from home has quickly reduced
visibility of the network for IT teams
of businesses of all sizes. This rush has left
staff literally to their own devices and more
prone to breaches, particularly with COVIDrelated
scams on the rise using phishing
emails and phone calls impersonating the
World Health Organization, for example.
It’s also led to another familiar natural
consequence of staff being away from the
office: Shadow IT.
Businesses are now quickly learning how to
secure the network with increasingly complex
requirements, while also keeping staff happy
and engaged using the devices and apps
they’re comfortable using from home.
If these lessons are heeded, the world will
be ready to make this temporary work era
something more permanent and bring with
them a new era of efficiency and productivity.
But a few more checks and balances when
it comes to security need to be considered
before organizations dive in completely.
A long time coming
The implementation of ‘telecommuting’
strategies has been a slow burn despite
the promises of productivity increases and
happier staff. Recent research from Gartner
found that demand for remote work will
increase by 30%, led by a demand driven by
Generation Z – while a significant number,
that’s an increase over a full decade and
suggests that telecommuting wasn’t an
Further, a litany of failed WFH initiatives
left many organizations cautious, with
Yahoo’s decision in 2013 to ban working
from home heralded by some as the collapse
of home working. However, the pandemic,
quite clearly, has changed everything. A
recent survey found that nearly 50% of
organizations now have 81% or more of
their staff working remotely as a result
of the pandemic, with another 15% of
respondents claiming between 61–80% of
staff were working remotely.
For many businesses, those changes could
be permanent. Optus, Australia’s second
largest telco, has already stated that its
work-from-home measures will remain
Jamie Humphrey, General Manager
Australia and New Zealand, Rubrik
SHIFT AND HAVE
RAMPED UP THEIR
a permanent feature for its call center
operations in Australia.
Yet if Optus’ mandate is to become
the norm for other businesses too, the
convenience of working from home –
including using one’s own device and
applications – needs to be balanced with an
increased focus on security. Unfortunately
for organizations, it appears cyberthreats are
taking advantage of the sudden shift and
have ramped up their attacks.