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39% of businesses dismissed staff over cybersecurity breach during lockdown

Some 39% of UK business decision makers have admitted to dismissing staff members due to a breach of company cyber security policy since the start of the Covid-19 outbreak, according to new research from Centrify.

The survey of 200 UK business decision makers, conducted by independent polling agency Censuswide, also revealed that almost two-thirds (65%) of companies have made substantial changes to their cyber security policy in response to Covid-19 and 100% remote working.

Despite this, 58% agreed that employees are more likely to try and circumvent company security practices when working from home – indicating a fundamental flaw in the execution of security measures in a remote-working model.

In an effort to combat poor security practice from employees, 57% of business decision makers revealed that they are currently implementing more measures to securely authenticate employees.

Such measures include biometric data checks, such as fingerprint and facial recognition technology, and other multi-factor authentication steps when gaining access to certain applications, files and accounts.

In addition, more than half (55%) of businesses already have, or plan to formally ban staff from using personal devices to work from home.

Andy Heather, vice president of Centrify, said: “With more people than ever working from home and left to their own devices, it’s inevitable that some will find security work arounds, such as using personal laptops and not changing passwords, in order to maximise productivity.

“It’s also possible that the changes in security procedures are not being communicated well to employees, and many are practising unsafe internet usage without even realising.”

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