Businesses are becoming more and more exposed to sophisticated cyber attacks, which can have serious implications on their reputation and finances. Management and IT decision makers should pay more attention to preventative measures to avoid data breaches.
The situation needs to be under control especially when critical applications use emerging technologies in the cloud and management often allows employees to access these programs remotely from various devices, says Matthew Kibby, Regional Director, VMware Sub-Saharan Africa.
When data grows exponentially in any organisation, it becomes more difficult to protect vulnerable and sensitive information. Businesses will have to implement strong data security protocols and update these constantly to fend off rising malware and phishing threats.
Research conducted by VMware on the adoption of data security protocols by management and IT decision-makers (ITDMs) in South Africa showed that more than half of the organisations questioned did not have an overall business strategy to address cybersecurity concerns.
When security strategies were in place, few in the company were aware of its existence. Worse, 16% of respondents believed that Management and C-level executives did not view cybersecurity as a priority for the organisation.
It reflected a major disconnect between the IT departments and the C-level executives across the board, with 35% ITDMs declaring that management should be held accountable for damaging data breaches.
“With the complexities of an increasingly digital business world, current security methods may not be keeping pace. There still appears to be a reluctance from corporate South Africa to spending money on new forms of IT security,” says Kibby.
The lack of budget allocated to enforce and update cybersecurity protocols means outdated software and systems security solutions, with serious data breaches consequences.
Furthermore, many employees are putting businesses at risk to access company data for the sake of better productivity (47%), while most of them are aware of the vulnerability of their devices and hacked data (42%).
Educating the workforce about security threats and enforcing company-wide compliance policy is the right step forward to bridge the gap between IT, management, and staff.
Meanwhile, IT departments should approach security architecture through powerful and responsive virtualisation solutions that give the security and flexibility needed to address cyber threats in the organisation.
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