Corporate data policies may need to be refreshed as workforce remains remote HONG KONG, CHINA – Media OutReach – 15 September 2020 – Trend...

Corporate data policies may need to be refreshed as workforce remains remote

HONG KONG, CHINA – Media OutReach – 15 September 2020 – Trend Micro
(TYO: 4704; TSE: 4704),
the leader
in cloud security, today released survey results that show smart home
devices and their apps represent a major weak link in the corporate
cybersecurity chain as the lines between work and home life increasingly blur.

Trend Micro’s Head in the Clouds study surveyed
more than 13,000 remote workers across 27 countries to find out more about the
habits of distributed workforces during the pandemic. It revealed that 39% of
workers use personal devices to access corporate data, often via services and
applications hosted in the cloud. These personal smartphones, tablets and
laptops may be less secure than corporate equivalents and exposed to vulnerable
IoT apps and gadgets on the home network. Over one third (36%) of remote
workers surveyed do not have basic password protection on all personal devices,
for example.

Dr Linda K. Kaye, a cyberpsychology expert said:
“The fact that so many remote workers use personal devices for accessing
corporate data and services suggests that there may be a lack of awareness
about the security risks associated with this. Tailored cybersecurity training
which recognises the diversity of different users and their levels of awareness
and attitudes around risks would be beneficial to help mitigate any security
threats which may derive from these issues.”

More than half (52%) of global remote workers have IoT
devices connected to their home network, 10% using lesser-known brands, the
study revealed. Many such devices — especially from smaller brands — have
well-documented weaknesses such as unpatched firmware vulnerabilities and
insecure logins. These could theoretically allow attackers to gain a foothold
in the home network, then use unprotected personal devices as a stepping-stone
into the corporate networks they’re connected to.

There’s an additional risk to enterprise networks
post-lockdown if malware infections picked up at home are physically brought
into the office via unsecured personal devices at organizations with
bring-your-own-device (BYOD) practices.

The research also revealed that 70% of global remote
workers connect corporate laptops to the home network. Although these machines
are likely to be better protected than personal devices, there is still a risk
to corporate data and systems if users are allowed to install unapproved
applications on these devices to access home IoT devices.

“IoT has
empowered simple devices with computing and connectivity, but not necessarily
adequate security capabilities,” said Tony Lee, Head of Consulting at Trend
Micro Hong Kong and Macau. “They could actually be making hackers’ lives easier
by opening backdoors that could compromise corporate networks. This threat is
amplified as an age of mass remote work blurs the lines between private and
company devices, putting both personal and business data in the firing line.
Now more than ever, it is important that individuals take responsibility for
their cybersecurity and that organisations continue to educate their employees
on best practices.”

Trend Micro recommends employers ensure their remote
workers are compliant with existing corporate security policies, or, if needed,
companies should refine these rules to recognise the threat from BYOD practice
and IoT devices and applications.

Companies should also reappraise the security
solutions they offer to employees using home networks to access corporate
information. Shifting to a cloud-based security model can alleviate many remote
working risks in a highly cost-efficient and effective manner.

About Trend Micro

Trend Micro, a global leader in cybersecurity,
helps make the world safe for exchanging digital information. Leveraging over
30 years of security expertise, global threat research, and continuous
innovation, Trend Micro enables resilience for businesses, governments, and
consumers with connected solutions across cloud workloads, endpoints, email,
IIoT, and networks. Our XGen™ security strategy powers our solutions with a
cross-generational blend of threat-defense techniques that are optimized for
key environments and leverage shared threat intelligence for better, faster
protection. With over 6,700 employees in 65 countries, and the world’s most
advanced global threat research and intelligence, Trend Micro enables
organizations to secure their connected world

Source:: Media Outreach