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June 25, 2023

Safeguarding Businesses in a Hybrid Work World: The Need for Specialized Managed Service Providers

The hybrid work model, a balance between office and remote work that has become the norm during and now, after the pandemic, is facing increasing scrutiny. New research suggests that employees, rather than anonymous hackers, are the primary culprits behind corporate data breaches. This highlights the need for companies to partner with Managed Service Providers (MSPs) who specialize in securing hybrid work environments to ensure their survival and success.

A study conducted by Apricorn revealed that 70% of data breaches were due to employee error. It found that 22% of business security decision-makers believe employees have unintentionally put company data at risk, while 21% attribute data exfiltration to employees falling victim to phishing emails.

Alarmingly, the survey also showed a marked increase in instances of deliberate breaches by employees. As per the study, 20% of security workers believe that data breaches in their organization have been engineered by malicious employees, a statistic that has doubled compared to the previous year.

Jon Fielding, Apricorn EMEA's managing director, noted that the lack of trust in employees' abilities to protect data was more pronounced with remote work. "Our research indicates businesses don’t trust their employees to live up to their responsibilities around protecting data, especially when they’re working remotely," he said.

About 48% of survey respondents believe their remote or mobile workers knowingly exposed data to a breach in the last year, with 46% expressing a lack of concern about cybersecurity. "Organisations must rebuild a culture that ensures everyone has a security-first mindset, wherever they’re working,” Fielding emphasized.

The issue of cybersecurity becomes even more crucial with the rise of the Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) approach. While lauded for its potential to cut costs, it is widely seen as a significant source of security risk, due to inconsistent application of policies and protective measures. The study found that 17% of companies do not require approval for workers to use their own devices or apply any controls. Moreover, 15% only authorize corporate IT provision, with few having an effective way to enforce this.

In a hybrid work environment, an effective balance between flexibility, productivity, and robust cybersecurity measures is vital. Without it, businesses face a ticking time bomb of security threats.

This is where specialized MSPs come into play. An MSP with expertise in securing hybrid workplaces can help create and enforce rigorous security policies, provide cybersecurity education to employees, monitor network activity, detect and respond to threats, and ensure compliance with industry standards. These services are critical to prevent both inadvertent and intentional security breaches, and to maintain business continuity.

As businesses continue to navigate the challenges of the hybrid work model, partnership with a skilled MSP is no longer a luxury but a necessity to stay secure and in business.

Protecting yourself is getting tougher but must be done to keep your business or government agency, school, state, city, etc. running.

Ask the Hybrid Work Experts at Apex Technology Services about how we can help your organization stay secure.

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