Remote working needs a change in security mindset

remote working, telecommuting

Although COVID-19 has meant a change to remote working, six out of 10 respondents to a new survey by Thales are still relying on traditional security tools and 44 percent are not confident in their ability to scale to remote work.

The study of 2,600 IT decision makers, commissioned by Thales and conducted by 451 Research seeks to better understand the new security risks and challenges caused by the rise of remote working and cloud transformation.

VPN is the most common remote access technology, cited by 60 percent of respondents, but zero trust network access/software defined perimeter (ZTNA/SDP) is the top choice for those planning new deployments (44 percent). Nearly 40 percent expect to replace their VPN with ZTNA/SDP, while 38 percent expect to move to a multi-factor authentication (MFA) solution.

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"Seemingly overnight, remote access went from being an exception to the default working model for a large swath of employees. As a result, businesses are navigating a volatile and complex world, and adopting a zero trust model of cybersecurity will enable them to continue to conduct operations safely amidst the uncertainty," says Francois Lasnier, vice president of Access Management solutions at Thales. "One of the core barriers businesses face when starting their zero trust journey is the balance between locking down access without interrupting workflow. People require access to sensitive data in order to work and collaborate and business leaders will need to ensure that a drop in productivity doesn’t become an unwanted side effect. The research shows that IT professionals increasingly see access management and modern authentication capabilities as key components in achieving a zero trust model."

Despite the well-known limitations of passwords, enterprises' investment in MFA still trails other security tools like firewalls, endpoint security, SIEM and email security. Remote access users are still the main use case for MFA adoption (71 percent).

You can get the full survey results at the Thales site.

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