36% of employees have ‘picked up bad cybersecurity habits’

More than a third of workers say they have picked up bad cybersecurity behaviours and found security ‘workarounds’ since working remotely, according to new research.

A study commissioned by Tessian, which surveyed over 4,000 professionals in the US and UK across varying company sizes and industries, found that 30 per cent of employees think they can get away with riskier security behaviours when working remotely.

The report, which also surveyed 200 IT professionals, revealed that around two in every five workers admit the cybersecurity behaviours they practice while working from home are different to those in the office.

Nearly half – 49 per cent – said that the reason for this is because they are not being watched by IT.

The data found that more than a quarter of employees have made a mistake that has compromised company security that they have never told anyone about, due to fear of disciplinary action or having to take part in more security training.

70 per cent of IT leaders think that the return to office will encourage staff to follow company security policies around data protection and privacy.

“The shift to an all-remote workforce was one huge challenge for IT leaders, but the next transition to a hybrid work model is poised to be even more challenging - particularly when it comes to employees’ behaviours,” said Tim Sadler, chief executive, Tessian. “Employees are the gatekeepers to data and systems, but expecting them to be security experts and scaring them into compliance won’t work.

Sadler added: “IT leaders need to prioritise building a security culture that empowers people to work securely and productively, and understand how to encourage long-lasting behavioural change overtime if they’re going to thrive in this new way of working.”

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